Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Towering problem

I read in the paper today that some folks in Calgary are up in arms over the installation of cell phone towers in their neighbourhoods. They have discovered that companies do not have to seek permission or feedback when tower height is less than 15 metres (about 50 feet). So towers are popping up everywhere, in exchange for a lease payment to the (usually) commercial property owner.

My two cents: I'm sure the companies are glad that there is no community approval required to erect shorter towers, as the mobile phone system needs these towers to function. Because of the way radio works, when you've established an area that needs better coverage, you don't have the luxury of sticking it just any old place - it has to go in a specific area, give or take a few metres. The 'not in my back yard' mentality just doesn't work.

A gentle reminder to cell phone users - if you want a reliable, robust network to make your calls and send your texts, there's going to be more towers erected. To those who feel the towers are an eyesore and potentially reduce property values, remember all of the electricity / cable poles and light standards on the street.

I do have one bone to pick with the cell companies though. Considering that there are established tower designs that blend in better - some look like tall conifers for example, you guys could be putting in a better effort to make them look better instead of sticking out like a sore thumb.

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