T-Mobile and the City of Tustin planned to erect a 65 foot cell phone tower at the back end of the park near the gate to Peters Canyon Elementary school. The proposal received approval from the Tustin Zoning Commission despite vigorous opposition at the public meeting on Wednesday, October 20th. Due in large part to additional opposition raised by local residents in the days following this meeting, and at the request of Tustin City Council Member Doug Davert, the Zoning Commission decision was vacated on October 27th, and a public hearing before the Planning Commission was set for December 14, 2010, to allow for additional public input.
T-Mobile has redesigned the proposed installation to look like 3, 45' tall flag poles located in the parking area of the park. While this is a better design, it will only accommodate their equipment and, if another carrier wants to place an installation in the park additional towers must be built.
Let them know you are not happy about this!
If you would like to get involved or join our email list please email us at SaveCedarGrovePark@gmail.com.
We are not opposed to the use of cell phones and wireless technology, and acknowledge that cell phone coverage in the Peters Canyon area of Tustin Ranch is sub-standard. However, we feel that Cedar Grove Park is no place for a cell tower due to its historic significance, scenic beauty, and close proximity to Peters Canyon Elementary and Pioneer Middle Schools. We also feel that a tower at this location will have a negative impact on property values of homes nearby. Once it is done, it cannot be undone.
Our goal is to convince the Planning Commission, Tustin City Council, and T-Mobile to consider alternate sites for a cell tower to serve the needs of the Peters Canyon area that will have less negative impact on the neighboring communities.
Many cities around Southern California are in battles with their city officials and T-Mobile, or other cell service providers, due to the proliferation of cell towers in residential neighborhoods. Often the first notice residents have of a tower going up is when the construction crews arrive to start breaking ground. We advocate greater transparency in the selection process of these sites and inclusion of the local residents in the final approval to assure that the best possible site is selected and the negative impacts to the community are minimized.
An alternate location for a cell installation exists just 400 yards from Cedar Grove Park at the Orange County Fire Authority complex on Jamboree Road. Two cell towers have been approved for construction there and Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint have already agreed to place their equipment at this facility. We feel T-Mobile should do the same.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
T-Mobile runs signal strength tests.
It's interesting to note that they chose to erect the tower in the parking lot, not up at the end of the park where the tower installation is actually going to be. Is it because if they tested up there they would actually get a poorer reading? And what conclusions can be drawn from a test that doesn't actually simulate the real location?
They have been telling us over and over that changing the height or the location of the antenna by as little as a few feet can have a drastic impact on the coverage for a given location. Currently T-Mobile claims that the OCFA site is inferior to the Cedar Grove site because their antennas at OCFA would be five feet lower than at Cedar Grove Park. Five feet! So what are we to believe?
Don't forget - the Planning Commission Hearing is next Tuesday, January 25th!