Cell tower gets Dysart’s support
|By Mark Arike - Staff Writer | March 28, 2018
Dysart council endorsed a proposed cell tower to improve service in the Kennisis Lake area during a March 26 meeting.
The nearly 89-feet tall wood pole tower will be erected on a municipally-owned road allowance near the intersection of Watts Road and Kennisis Lake Road. Council first reviewed Bell Mobility’s proposal in January, according to senior planner Sue Harrison. About 35 people attended a public meeting in February.
The majority of concerns dealt with the tower’s location, its proximity to homes and the road, potential environmental impacts, and perceived public health and
safety issues. “The majority of those attending were supportive of the proposal, citing the need for enhanced telecommunications in the area, for health and safety, convenience and economic development,” said Harrison, adding that 100 written comments were submitted.
The majority were supportive. Staff reviewed the proposal to see how it fits with the Site Selection and Design Criteria established by Policy 38. According to the criteria, the tower should be one kilometre from the nearest residence. In this case, the closest home is within 100 metres. It’s also 35 metres closer to the road than the suggested 60 metres and will be partially, instead of fully, screened by existing trees and brush.
Harrison encouraged council to consider the overall objectives of the criteria “in order to balance the site-specific considerations with the broader community objectives.”
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, formerly Industry Canada, is the approval authority for telecommunications proposals. CanACRE, agents for Bell, requested the municipality indicate their position on the project. A representative told council the plan is to install the tower this summer.
MARK ARIKE is a reporter for The Highlander.