A proposed gun club that has been a target for scrutiny was approved by Colorado Springs City Council Wednesday.
City Council approved of plans for Whistling Pines Gun Club West early Wednesday morning after hearing more than five hours of testimony from the owners and upset neighbors.
The new indoor range will be on Peace Palace Point, near the intersection of Garden of the Gods Road and Centennial Boulevard. The 18,000 square-foot building, sitting on 2.5 acres, will include a larger section for rifle shooting.
The new range will be at the base of a bluff under the Pinecliff neighborhood where 671 homeowners live.
"I just don't need to hear that repeated gunfire. I don't care how much he says he can muffle it, he cannot. So if we sit out here on our decks in the summer, we will hear that," said neighbor Charles Adams.
Adams is a 26 year army veteran. He and his neighbors have fought to keep the gun club out of range.
"I don't need to hear that (gunfire) anymore. You know it wasn't called PTSD when we came home from Vietnam. It was called shell shock in the second world war, battle fatigue, it's all the same thing and we don't need to hear that," said Adams.
"I think it's a detriment to this neighborhood," said neighbor Mike Mulready.
Joyce Holmes and her husband Bob own Whistling Pines Gun Club. They already have one location near Highway 24 and State Highway 94. They chose to open the second location on the west side of Colorado Springs to cater to their customers. They are thrilled about City Council's vote, and so are their members.
"We are good neighbors. We are doing everything we know how to do to make people happy. We aren't just out to, 'here we are too bad.' We are not that way," said Joyce Holmes.
She said the gun club will be seen, but not heard.
"Even here in this building, we have no noise abatement whatsoever, you go out to the sidewalk, on a busy day, you aren't going to hear it far away so how are they going to hear it up there? Plus, we are putting in close to $200,000 worth of noise abatement," said Holmes.
Joyce and Bob Holmes plan to break ground at the new site April 19.
City Council put in place these stipulations while approving the gun club.
- 4 inch concrete lift on the roof
- No .50-caliber or .460 Weatherby magnum
- No gun larger than a .300 Winchester
- 8 p.m. closing time
- Comply with the city's noise ordinance in a commercial zone re: 60
- decibel levels