I thought this letter to the editor was definitely worth a share.
At last night’s Planning Commission meeting many Danville residents including myself raised strong opposition against this proposal (approving Land Use Permit request LUP17-0035 allowing the installation of a wireless communication facility on an existing joint utility pole.) There was a petition against this tower via Change.org signed by 134 residents in just two days. Still, the commission unanimously approved this request. One of my main concerns is with the proposed tower’s vicinity to my parent’s home of 470 Edinburgh Circle.
On the staff report there is a property neatly outlined – that is my parent’s home – aka ground zero for the cell tower. Why was my parent’s home neatly outlined in this report? I raised this issue last night and my concern was not addressed.
32-70.7 Development Standards
Any locations within 250 feet from a residential dwelling in this section 32-70.7 shall be considered “discouraged.” As you can see with the Google satellite images, the tower is well within the 250 ft. limit. My parent’s sleep upstairs on the second floor, even closer to the level of the proposed tower. My two children (ages 5 and 2) spend most of their time in the backyard even closer to the installation tower.
Negative Impact on Property Value on 470 Edinburgh Circle and surrounding homes
Both of my parents are retired. This home is their nest egg and the proposed tower will greatly affect the value of their home (and others within a 1300 ft. radius). The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) considers cell towers as “Hazards and Nuisances.” Here is an article with studies regarding the negative impact cell towers have on house values: http://www.emfsa.co.za/news/property-values-desirability-cell-towers/
Estate agents are regulated by a strict code of conduct. They have an equal duty to both buyer and seller of a property. That duty includes informing a buyer of any negative aspects to the proposed sale including the proximity of radiation emitting structures and equipment such as high voltage powerlines, transformer stations, cell phone antennae and cell phone base stations. 79% of people would never purchase a house next to a cell tower: https://magazine.realtor/daily-news/2014/07/25/cell-towers-antennas-problematic-for-buyers
It was the Planning Commission’s duty to DISCOURAGE this proposal as it directly violates section 32-70.7 of the Development Standards. There are a plethora of residents in the 1300 ft. radius of this cell tower. The value of all of their homes will be greatly affected by the construction of this tower. The approval of this permit is a conscious devaluation of these properties and of the town of Danville as whole.
PAUSE the proposal until we can have more meaningful discussions and better solutions. There are places to put these towers FURTHER away from residences and into more commercial areas. Many towns have opposed these “small cell ” antennas and have made their own solutions:
Emergency ordinance limiting the installations to commercial areas and 1500 ft. away from any residence:
I implore both the Town Council and Planning Commission to reconsider this permit, pause the execution of it, and draft a new ordinance that would ensure the home values and people’s health of this town are not negatively impacted by the installation of these cell towers.