Coronado Is “Ahead of The Game” Regarding Small Cells

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At a recent City Council meeting, two AT&T representatives were present to discuss 4G small cells the carrier plans to install on the island, reported the Eagle & Journal.

According to Kevin McGee, AT&T Mobility Area Manager for New Site Builds in San Diego, Los Angeles, and Hawaii, AT&T plans to add ten small cell sites in the city. The status of the sites varies: three locations were previously approved, four were approved during a May 21 meeting, and three site requests have not been presented to the city for review, according to the Eagle & Journal.

When asked about future plans for 5G sites, McGee said, “We will require additional equipment, and we may use the 4G sites we have today, or we may have to go to other locations. We don’t know how many sites will be needed until we know the use. It depends on the amount of users, and how much our users use their phones, download movies and are on Facebook.”

McGee also gave insight into the process to determine where small cell sites should be added. “About three times a year, engineers do a scrub of usage on the network, determining how much usage there is, whether it is trending up, is stable or going down. They make an estimate of where the usage will be two years out because it takes us 18 months to obtain permits.”

During the meeting, some residents raised concerns over potential health issues and were asked to direct questions via email to Richard Porras, AT&T Assistant Vice President of External Affairs, who was present at the meeting.

Another voice at the meeting was Dr. Jonathan L. Kramer, Senior Partner, Telecom Law Firm P.C, who represents municipalities for telecom issues. He told the Eagle & Journal, that in light of more recent FCC regulations, Coronado, “is ahead of the game.”

Kramer said of Coronado City Ordinance 29, which was passed March 14, 2019, “Through the ordinance, we have location standards, discouraged locations, and design standards. You have a well-crafted set of policies that doesn’t invite litigation because you have gone too far (in crafting the ordinance). It’s a fair policy that works.”

June 17, 2019

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