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Union Park Neighbors To Meet With North Coast Music Fest Reps Over Concerns

 Fans gather in front of a stage at the North Coast Music Festival in 2014 at Union Park.
Fans gather in front of a stage at the North Coast Music Festival in 2014 at Union Park.
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NEAR WEST SIDE — In an effort to address neighbors' concerns, organizers of one of the summer's biggest music festivals will meet with Near West Side residents next week. 

North Coast Music Festival promoters will present their proposed operational plan at a Union Park Advisory Council meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Union Park Fieldhouse, 1501 W. Randolph St. Chicago Park District officials are expected at the meeting, and neighbors are welcome to attend, too. 

Among other complaints, Neighbors of West Loop leaders said the loud music fest attracts a rowdy, drunken crowd to their neighborhood and creates traffic and parking problems in the area. 

"This particular group has done nothing to help our young people and it is a known fact that drugs are being bought and sold at this concert," said Patti Mocco, CAPS facilitator for the surrounding area. 

In 2013, a naked 22-year-old man was Tasered and arrested near the North Coast Musical Festival grounds after jumping on a Mercedes and crashing through its windshield. Police said at the time that they believed the man was under the influence of drugs. 

On Wednesday, a spokeswoman for the fest said North Coast has worked closely with neighbors to ensure a safe event and has provided funding and donations to many area non-profits for the past seven years. 

"The community around Union Park has seen dramatic changes in the last 5-10 years, and our plans will continue to adjust to the developing needs of the community," she said. "We look forward to meeting with the Neighbors of the West Loop and other community organizations in the coming weeks, and continue this dialogue." 

The festival is presented by React Presents, Silver Wrapper, Cold Grums Productions and Metronome Chicago. 

North Coast festival grounds accommodate up to 20,000 fans per day. Attendees must be 17 or older, according to North Coast policies. 

This year's North Coast headliners include DJ and producer Bassnectar, and electronic artists ZEDD and ODESZA. Three-day general admission tickets for the fest, in its seventh year, are currently on sale for $180.

Union Park is also home to Pitchfork Music Festival and hosted Common's Aahh! Fest in 2014. 

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