CSC: DO 239 Ashford Opinion
Decisions

DOCKET NO. 239 - National Grid Communications, Inc. application for a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need for the construction, maintenance and operation of a wireless telecommunications facility at 229-231 Ashford Center Road, Ashford, Connecticut.

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Connecticut

Siting

Council

May 20, 2003

Opinion

On December 30, 2002, Tower Ventures, Inc., a tower developer, applied to the Connecticut Siting Council (Council) for a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need (Certificate) for the construction, maintenance and operation of a 180-foot monopole wireless telecommunications facility at 229-231 Ashford Center Road in Ashford, Connecticut. AT&T Wireless PCS, LLC (AT&T) was an intervenor in this proceeding. This application was originally submitted to the town as a Special Use Permit application. The town approved the application on January 14, 2002.

The primary purpose of the proposed facility is to provide wireless telecommunications coverage to Route 44 in Ashford. Two carriers have committed to locating at this facility, AT&T and Omnipoint Holdings, Inc. d/b/a T-Mobile.

The site is located in a heavily wooded portion of a 957-acre parcel used as a Boy Scout camp. A 785-foot access road would be constructed, a portion of which would use an existing logging road. Approximately 32 trees would be removed for development of the access road and compound. The access road would traverse 128 feet of designated wetlands in the vicinity of Fitts Road. Other access points were investigated in order to reduce or prevent impacts to wetlands; however, the site is bounded by wetlands to the west and a riparian area to the east, the only areas where frontage exists for an access road. The Town’s Conservation and Inland Wetlands Commission reviewed and approved the proposal, and issued a wetlands permit to the applicant. To reduce potential impacts to wetlands, the Council will order the applicant to place utilities in the base of the access road.

The proposed site does not contain known extant populations of Federal or State endangered, threatened or special concern species; nor would the proposed construction affect the state’s historical or archaeological heritage. The site would not require aviation lighting or marking. The tower radius would be contained within the site parcel with the closest property boundary located approximately 520 feet southwest of the site.

Although the area surrounding the site is rural with large tracts of undeveloped land, sensitive visual receptors consist of residential properties along Fitts Road and North Road, approximately a ¼ mile south and east of the site, respectively. The Council believes the tower, within a heavily wooded area, would not be obtrusive to the affected residents.

Radio frequency power density levels at the base of the proposed tower would be well below federal and state standards for the frequencies used by wireless companies. If federal or state standards change, the Council will require that the facility be brought into compliance with such standards. The Council will require that the power densities be remodeled in the event other carriers locate at this facility.

Based on the record in this proceeding, we find that the effects associated with the construction, operation, and maintenance of the telecommunications facility at the proposed site, including effects on the natural environment; ecological integrity and balance; public health and safety; scenic, historic, and recreational values; forests and parks; air and water purity; and fish and wildlife are not disproportionate either alone or cumulatively with other effects when compared to need, are not in conflict with policies of the State concerning such effects, and are not sufficient reason to deny this application. Therefore, we will issue a Certificate for the construction, operation, and maintenance of a 180-foot monopole telecommunications facility at the proposed site located at 229-231 Ashford Center Road, Ashford, Connecticut. The Council will condition the approval by requiring utilities to be contained within the access road to reduce the disturbance to wetland areas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Content Last Modified on 6/14/2005 9:22:29 AM