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Petition No. 731
East Hartford, Connecticut
Staff Report
August 24, 2005

T-Mobile seeks to replace an existing 15-foot tall rooftop flagpole/telecommunications tower with a 23-foot tall flagpole tower at the top of which it would install its antennas. Council member Dan Lynch and staff person David Martin met with Steve Humes and several other T-Mobile representatives to conduct a field review of the proposal on August 22, 2005. The owner of the building on which the flagpole tower is located was also present.

The building is an old grammar school that has been renovated into commercial office space near the intersection of Main Street and Brewer Street. Route 2 runs just south of the building, and Rentschler Field is not far to the northeast. The surrounding area is primarily commercial and industrial with modest single family residences to the east and south of the site.

The building has a widow’s walk at the top of its roof. Cingular has antennas attached to the sides of the widow’s walk railing, and AT&T has antennas mounted inside the existing 15-foot tall flagpole tower. T-Mobile would replace the existing flagpole tower with one that would be 23 feet all. The existing tower is 18" in diameter; the new tower would be 22" in diameter. T-Mobile’s ground cabinets would be installed on concrete pad on the west side of the building behind an existing row of 12 to 18 foot tall arbor vitae.

T-Mobile has received a height variance from the East Hartford ZBA for the proposed, higher tower. The city’s planning and zoning commission asked T-Mobile to seek the Siting Council’s approval rather than granting its own site plan approval.

Visibility of the new tower should be limited to the immediate vicinity of the building and from Route 2. Because it will be a flagpole, it should represent a negligible visual intrusion on the surrounding area.