CSC: DO 297 - Opinion

DOCKET NO. 297 Ė Sprint Spectrum, L.P. application for a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need for the construction, maintenance and operation of a telecommunications facility in Avon, Connecticut.








January 24, 2005


On August 17, 2004, Sprint Spectrum, L.P. (Sprint) 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 wireless telecommunications facility to be located in the Town of Avon, Connecticut. Sprint is seeking to develop a facility on property owned by the Town of Avon and formerly used as the town landfill. The landfill is now closed and the town uses the property as a transfer station and recycling center. Sprintís objective in locating a facility at this location is to provide service along Route 4 and Route 179 where it is experiencing substantial gaps in its service.

At this location, Sprint applied to erect a 110-foot tall laminated wood monopole within a 40-foot by 40-foot equipment compound that would be enclosed by a chain link fence. Sprint originally proposed this height because it anticipated that AT&T Wireless would locate on the tower at the 110-foot height. However, AT&Tís current plans are unclear, and there is no firm commitment by AT&T to go on this tower. Without AT&T, Sprint would be able to achieve its coverage objectives with its antennas mounted at the 100-foot height.

Vehicular access to the site would follow an existing road for a distance of 1445 feet and then follow a new gravel drive Sprint would install for a distance of 580 feet. Utilities would be brought to the facility site underground from the entrance of the landfill property. The routing of the utilities was selected to minimize the potential for disrupting the cap of the closed landfill.

Sprint has said it could adjust the location of its compound to save an existing 33" dbh tree that would otherwise have to be taken down.

The laminated wood pole to be erected by Sprint should have a minimal visual impact on the surrounding area. The nearest homes likely to have a view of the tower are at least 1,000 feet away. The tower would be visible year round from 56 acres in the surrounding vicinity.

There are no known existing populations of state endangered, threatened, or species of special concern at the proposed site. A facility at this location would not have any effect on architectural or archaeological resources.

The 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 tower be brought into compliance with such standards. The Council will require that the power densities be remodeled in the event other carriers add antennas to the tower.

Based on the record of this proceeding, the Council concludes that a 100-foot tower with flush-mounted antennas at the proposed site would allow Sprint to achieve its coverage objectives and that the location of the tower and equipment compound could be adjusted to save the existing 33" dbh tree.

The Council finds that the effects associated with the construction, operation, and maintenance of the proposed telecommunications facility, 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, the Council will issue a Certificate for the construction, operation, and maintenance of a 100-foot laminated wood tower and associated ground equipment on Town of Avon property located at 277 Huckleberry Hill in Avon, Connecticut.

Content Last Modified on 1/28/2005 4:50:36 PM