In Allen City, Texas, a new gun range almost didn’t happen. Residents who lived near the range opposed it. The planning commission voted to recommend denying approval for the project. That meant the city council would need a supermajority vote in favor of the range to be able to open.
Things just didn’t look good, but then…
The possibility of a gun range located right in Allen was uncertain heading into Tuesday night’s meeting of the Allen City Council.
Many residents, most of whose homes are in nearby Ansley Meadows, had voiced their opposition to building the Texas Legends Gun Range in close proximity to their neighborhood. The Planning and Zoning Commission, after tabling the item at their previous meeting, recommended denying approval of the project at their Nov. 7 meeting with a 4-3 vote, which, according to city ordinance, requires a supermajority (six votes in favor) vote from the council for the project’s approval.
But after two-and-a-half hours of discussion Tuesday night, the council gave the required supermajority vote by voting 6-1 in favor of the gun range, effectively approving its construction.
The two key issues cited from the opposition during the public hearing on Tuesday were noise and safety.
Stephanie Peterson cited real world examples of problematic gun ranges, including a facility in Trussville, Alabama built 600 feet away from a nearby neighborhood. Sheepdog Firearms was designed from the ground up, she said, and city officials were assured it would be soundproof, yet noise was audible in a video taken from within a neighborhood approximately 600 feet away. More than three months later, the issue is ongoing.
“I feel that approving this project puts too much risk on our shoulders and the citizens of Allen will have to bear the burden if something goes wrong,” Peterson said.
The fear surrounding the indoor range is understandable…if you’re unfamiliar with how indoor gun ranges are constructed.
You see, those ranges are built specifically to prevent anything from getting out. Let’s be honest, the folks with Texas Legends Gun Range have as much interest in keeping rounds on the range as anyone else. In fact, a case can be made that they’ve got more interest than anyone else.
Now, I get the argument about noise, but just because a couple of ranges are having a problem with noise doesn’t mean it’s universal. The local indoor range is absolutely silent from the outside, for example. From my experience, that is the norm for indoor ranges.
Regardless, it doesn’t matter. The range has the go-ahead to open. That means people in Allen City will have a safe place to go and shoot and get their concealed carry licenses for the state of Texas. With 30 lanes planned, it means plenty of room for everyone to go and shoot. This is a big win for the people of Allen City, even if some don’t think it is.
I’m glad to see the city council looked at this reasonably and didn’t cave in to all the fearmongering taking place. They made the sound choice.