by Terri Wiebold
Earlier this year, The Connection reported on a new cellular tower proposed to be built at the south end of The Ridge Golf Course parking lot. The 19-inch diameter, 35-foot tall tower was designed with a shoe-box style light mounted near the top, similar to those found in grocery store parking lots.
Although planned to provide additional security in the parking lot of The Ridge, near-by residents were outraged by the idea of having a light shine in their backyards all night and were very vocal about their concerns.
According to Douglas County Planner Elizabeth Kay Marchetti, the Planning Department received many complaints from residents about the location of the tower and especially the light on it.
“I encouraged them [residents] to connect with their HOAs,” said Kay Marchetti, and in response to that dialogue with the HOAs, several changes were made to the site plan.”
The Master Association Design and Review Committee (DRC) incorporated many of the residents’ concerns into its recommended changes in the referral process. As a result, the planned location of the pole has been moved 20 feet to the east, using the two large existing pine trees as a natural barrier. Seven additional Ponderosa Pine trees will also be planted to further protect neighboring homes.
According to DRC chairperson Bill Ader, the biggest concern for CPN residents is the light. “We have been working with T-Mobile and the County to reduce the impact on CPN residents,” said Ader. “But the Ridge Golf Course is adamant that the light be installed.”
As of press time, the DRC had negotiated a four-inch shield be placed around the light to minimize glare to surrounding areas, and the light was to be placed on a timer. The specifics as to when the timer was to go on and off were still unclear, according to the DRC. T-Mobile’s revised site plan indicates the lights will go on 30 minutes after dusk and turn off 30 minutes before dawn for the months of April through September.
Douglas County Engineering staff has reviewed the revised site plan and are working with T-Mobile to finalize the plans. Watch for further updates in future issues of The Connection or visit www.cpnhoa.org.