Glenshire shoots down cellphone tower proposal for eastern Truckee | SierraSun.com

Glenshire shoots down cellphone tower proposal for eastern Truckee

Margaret Moran
mmoran@sierrasun.com

TRUCKEE, Calif. — Despite opposition from Glenshire residents that halted a cellphone tower from being erected on homeowner association property, the matter may not be dead.

Up until last month, a disguised 91-foot-tall tower was proposed by Verizon to be placed behind the Glenshire Devonshire Residents Association's Clubhouse at 15726 Glenshire Drive in an effort to improve wireless service for area residents.

"I'm strongly opposed to this concept," Glenshire resident Mike Livak said at the association's Jan. 14 board of directors meeting. "Its proximity to sensitive uses, including children who use this building; environmental receptors including the pond, the wetlands and the ecosystem here; (and) its aesthetic impact all make it a bad idea in this location.

"I would aggressively pursue every administrative avenue to stop this."

“We really don’t want to get into a fight. ... This is about serving the clients in the area, so if the clients in the area don’t want it, there’s no reason to do so.”Charles ElliottComplete Wireless

Recommended Stories For You

'OPPORTUNITY FOR REVENUE'

One benefit the Glenshire Devonshire Residents Association envisioned with the project was an additional source of revenue.

"If someone comes to us as a potential outside revenue source, we have to check it out," board member Charles Timinsky told the large meeting crowd last month. "This isn't something we sought for."

Complete Wireless, a firm that builds cellphone towers for Verizon, approached the association in March 2014 about a tower, GDRA general manager Dan Warren said, with project details such as location and tower height learned in the months following.

Verizon was seeking a 25-year lease agreement for a 40-foot-by-40-foot piece of GDRA land, he said. As of the Jan. 14 meeting, a monthly lease fee had yet-to-be determined.

The initial lease offer from Verizon was $1,300 a month, Charles Elliott, with Complete Wireless, said at the meeting. The association countered with $2,500, which Elliott said was not doable, but "wiggle room" remained on the $1,300 offer.

"The reason this whole thing came about is … there was an opportunity for revenue outside of raising dues to take care of things like the pool maintenance and now the trail maintenance," said board member Dan Engler. "We would have some recurring revenue each and every month for a very long time, and it's not pocket change."

As of Jan. 1, the association charges its 1,357 residents $330 annually, which pays for capital improvements and infrastructure, Warren said.

"I'm sure you've considered the financial offers made by the company, but no amount of money is worth the degradation of our area," Glenshire resident Claudia Hanson said at the meeting. "There's plenty of cell coverage in Glenshire. We have Verizon. We have great coverage. Please deny this."

'SERVING THE CLIENTS'

While residents who spoke at the Jan. 14 meeting were opposed to the idea, Warren said he received about 15 letters out of 30 from Glenshire residents in favor of the tower due to better cellphone reception.

"Verizon constantly monitors its network performance and has determined the need for improved wireless coverage for the Glenshire community," said Heidi Flato, Verizon Wireless' public relations manager for Northern California, Northern Nevada and Hawaii. "Population growth and the increased demand for data capacity make it necessary to expand our network infrastructure."

Nonetheless, after the Jan. 14 meeting, Verizon decided to not move forward with the Glenshire Clubhouse proposal, she said.

"We really don't want to get into a fight," Elliott said during the meeting. "… This is about serving the clients in the area, so if the clients in the area don't want it, there's no reason to do so."

Yet, Verizon is considering "alternative locations on nearby properties to provide the necessary coverage to the Glenshire Denonshire community," Flato said, although none are within the association.

The association consists of 236 acres of open space, 1,357 residential lots and various amenities, Warren said.

When asked this week for details, Flato said: "An alternative location has not yet been officially selected. No additional details are available at this time."