Norway gives green light for cell tower

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NORWAY — The Planning Board on Thursday unanimously approved a site plan and building permit for a 190-foot wireless telecommunications tower on Frost Hill.

The approval was given to Global Tower Partners of Boca Raton, Fla., and co-applicant Northeast Wireless Networks of Falmouth. It followed a 20-minute public hearing and a review of the application’s adherence to the 24 performance standards set in the town’s site plan review.

The standards ranged from preserving and enhancing the landscape to providing adequate emergency vehicle access and stormwater management. The standards also seek assurances that environmentally sensitive and historic areas are preserved and there is no adverse soil erosion or noise and odor levels. The board agreed that the applicant adhered to all applicable performance standards.

Construction of the tower is expected to begin after Feb. 1, according to Blaine N. Hopkins, who represented Global Tower Partners at the hearing. It is expected to be completed within 45 days.

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Only one resident attended the hearing, asking several questions about the project following a 10-minute presentation by Hopkins. The questions included what frequencies would be used by the tower users, the range of radio frequency emissions and the effect on other nearby communications.

The tower will not interfere with other frequencies, Hopkins said.

“I’m very comfortable in saying there will be no interference from this,” he said.

Hopkins said the emissions will be minimal. “The power is so much less than that which we have around us,” he said, referring to power that is emitted daily from devices such as radios and cellphones.

There will also be no more need to install other GTP communication towers on Frost Hill, Hopkins said. The company will construct the 190-foot tower on a 10.75 acre parcel at 209 Frost Hill Road, owned by Roberta Wilner.

The base will be built at 975 feet above sea level. It will be the first GTP communications tower on Frost Hill, according to company officials, and be one of three in the area.

The unlit structure will have space for utilities and municipal services. Fire Chief Dennis Yates has received assurance that the company will allow space at the top for the Fire Department to place an emergency antenna and repeater.

Northeast Wireless Networks will be the first tenant to install telecommunications equipment and antenna arrays to provide service to AT&T network customers.

ldixon@sunjournal.com

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