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By moving to Pamelia in May, Audio Arsenal owners resolve noise complaints

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WATERTOWN — Complaints about noise from city residents who live near Audio Arsenal will soon be silenced as the business moves this month from its Arsenal Street location to the former F.X. Caprara building at 23428 Route 12 in the town of Pamelia.

Brothers Paul E. and Gregory G. LaDuke launched the business at 1057 Arsenal St. four years ago. They are pleased the noise they generate by tuning audio equipment for vehicles no longer will be a nuisance to residents. The new Pamelia location, leased from F.X. Caprara Auto Sales, is roughly quadruple the size. The business will open in Pamelia May 15. A grand reopening event will be hosted sometime later, and will include a barbecue and giveaways.

The decision by the LaDukes to relocate comes after Trudy A. Ryan and her family, who live directly behind the business, took the owners to court in 2011 after complaining about noise. A city police officer ticketed the business in April 2011 for violating the city’s noise ordinance just two weeks after the City Council passed a stricter law. A City Court judge dismissed the charge in December 2011, ruling that the city’s ordinance was too vague and did not apply to the commercially zoned business.

The LaDuke brothers — who have received ongoing complaints from the Ryan family since then — said that being in a location where noise is more acceptable will be a side benefit of its Pamelia headquarters. The new site will offer more garage space needed to expand in-house services. They said a contract with Rockford Fosgate, a popular U.S. manufacturer of car audio products, will enable them to expand their offerings.

“When the city passed its noise ordinance, we were the first one to have a violation, and it forced us to take the issue to court,” Gregory LaDuke said, adding that vehicles sometimes pull into the parking lot with loud sound systems.

“At the time, there were businesses on either side of us that said the noise was not an issue, and they were just as close as Ms. Ryan,” he said. “In the end, resolving the noise issue isn’t why we’re moving. But we’re happy to give the Ryan family the peace of mind they want.”

The 4,000-square-foot building in Pamelia, which has five garage bays, will enable the business to complete all of its work in-house, Paul LaDuke said.

The business, with four employees, will hire two garage technicians and a few part-time salesmen after moving to the new headquarters, he said. It also will sell used vehicles.

“We outgrew our building here years ago,” Paul said. “But we needed to find an affordable building, and staying on Arsenal Street wasn’t an option. This new location will give us space to do a lot more work in-house — vehicle detailing, window tinting and mounting and balancing tires.”

Despite its Pamelia location, the business will keep its Audio Arsenal name, he said.

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