City parkland needs protection from visual blight of cell tower

To the Editor,

Re: City eyes additional parkland protection, Jan. 22.

What about Neck Point Park and the proposed Telus cell tower at 4600 Hammond Bay Rd.?

Seven city councillors (including the mayor) sit as directors on the Regional District of Nanaimo board.

There are many, many people in the immediate area who will be affected by the proposed 43-metre cellphone tower, as well as many other citizens of Nanaimo and tourists who visit.

This location may be convenient for Telus to negotiate a lease; however, it really does not make much sense to locate a cell tower in such a low-lying area and then have to build a 43-metre tower in order to gain the height needed to reach the ‘dead’ zones, which have been there for so many years.

From what I have seen in many cities and many countries, cellphone towers are placed on high ground in order to maximize the reach. This same thing happens in Nanaimo and area already. It would be much better to locate the cell tower on the top of the ridge at the end of Glen Oaks Drive.

Even with the proposed tower near the water in Hammond Bay, it will not reach around the hairpin corner at 3565 Hammond Bay Road. There will still be a dead zone from there almost to Departure Bay Road, whereas a shorter tower on the top of the ridge would reach the whole area.

Full consideration needs to be given to the residents of Hammond Bay who have paid dearly for their ocean view properties and who pay significant taxes for that ocean view each year.

Consideration is also needed for the preservation of Neck Point Park as a wilderness nature area where many residents of Nanaimo come to enjoy the peace and beauty of the park.

The proposed cell tower will also detract from the picturesque view of Shack Island, which is dear to the history of the area and many amateur and professional artists.

The Regional District of Nanaimo was very conscientious about the visual impact along Hammond Bay Road and from the houses when they built the secondary treatment facility. Now they appear to have thrown all their discretion out the door in order to gain a measly $24,500 per year in lease payments.

To put it bluntly, the thing is a blemish on the City of Nanaimo and it will have big red lights and flashing strobes on it at night to boot.

Brooks Allisen

Nanaimo

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