Cellphone tower denied permit

A Rogers Communications Inc. proposal to build a cellphone tower near homes in Sylvan Lake has been met with static from residents and municipalities.

A Rogers Communications Inc. proposal to build a cellphone tower near homes in Sylvan Lake has been met with static from residents and municipalities.

Both the Town of Sylvan Lake and Red Deer County voiced their opposition to the chosen site for the 60-metre tower off 60th Street on the southwest edge of the town.

A small group of town residents applauded on Tuesday afternoon when the county’s municipal planning commission (which is comprised of members of council) voted 4-3 to deny a development permit for the tower.

“I thought we were not going to win this one,” said a relieved Hope Jensen after the meeting.

Residents said cellphone coverage is important but they want Rogers to either build the site further away from homes or use existing towers.

Homeowners are also concerned the tower will hurt property values, could pose a health risk and will be an eyesore.

“I think there are other locations where it would be better suited,” said Jensen.

Helen Dietz was also concerned about property devaluation and noted the tower falls in an area due to be developed.

“There’s a lot of growth anticipated for that area for the Town of Sylvan Lake.”

Lori Mercredi said she has passed her concerns on to Rogers but has not heard back and feels residents are being ignored.

“It’s just like a done deal, and I feel it’s really unfair to people who live around there.”

County Mayor Jim Wood spoke strongly in favour of the tower, saying while no one wants a tower next to them, good cellphone communications are important to economic development.

Coun. Richard Lorenz said he didn’t see how this issue was any different than putting an industrial area across from housing.

“There are other places where (the tower) could be moved.” Town of Sylvan Lake council also voiced its opposition to the tower in a motion passed on Monday night to send that message to Rogers.

Town communications officer Joanne Gaudet said the proposed site is identified for future growth.

“Being as it’s so close to current residential and potentially right in the middle of a future development for us … it’s just an inappropriate area and we would like them to move it back,” she said.

“We do know from the past there are other options for the placing of cellphone towers, so hopefully they can try an alternative that isn’t so close to residential.”

The county’s decision and local opposition does not necessarily mean the cellphone plan is dead.

Towers are federally regulated and it will be up to Industry Canada to decide what location is appropriate.

A Rogers spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

pcowley@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Red Deer’s single parents and children at greatest risk of poverty, says report

Yet almost half of local low-income families are people living alone

Graffiti vandals strike Kerry Wood Nature Centre in Red Deer

Cleanup will be tricky at bird sanctuary

Foodgrains project is in the ground

Lacombe County farmers continue to help feed the hungry

Red Deer housing market sales down 6%

The Red Deer housing market remains flat, says a realtor. Alex Wilkinson… Continue reading

Stamp collectors from across Alberta will gather in Red Deer Saturday

Local philatelist wants to restart the Red Deer stamp club

Dogs and drugs don’t mix: Red Deer business wants to leave downtown after 18 years

One business owner is done with downtown Red Deer after 18 years.… Continue reading

Cast your votes for the Best of Red Deer

Nominations for the Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are officially… Continue reading

Gardening: Adding a new dimension with water

A water feature, large or small, adds a whole new dimension to… Continue reading

Alberta throne speech promises changes to expand economy, end carbon tax

EDMONTON — The new Alberta government has set its first legislature sitting… Continue reading

Wider fire bans, off-highway vehicle restrictions in northern Alberta

The fire ban prohibiting campfires and unauthorized burning, and restricting the use… Continue reading

WestJet pilot injured by green laser light while approaching Orlando airport

A WestJet pilot flying from Newfoundland to Orlando International Airport had his… Continue reading

Canada hires firm to ship back garbage, will be done before end of June: McKenna

OTTAWA — Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says the Canadian trash that has… Continue reading

Newfoundland man pleads not guilty in case of skeleton stolen from graveyard

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — A young Newfoundland man pleaded not guilty Wednesday… Continue reading

Canadians increasingly worried over boomers’ health bills, survey finds

CHARLOTTETOWN — Canadians are increasingly concerned about how to pay for the… Continue reading

Most Read