The Marine Communications Infrastructure Committee presented a proposal for a new, 180-foot monopole on city-owned land to the council in early January. The Country Messenger reported the reasons for the tower in the city of Marine on St. Croix were public safety, commerce and overall quality of life for residents.
Public safety is at the top of the list, according to the Committee’s Paul Anderson.
“There are a lot of stories about this where people try to call 911 when there’s been an accident or a medical emergency and not getting a cell signal, or if they are unable to say where they are, no one can find them…This is why Geo-Location and 911 service is a critical factor.”
Anderson also stated the cell tower proposal would positively impact commerce and community connection. Marine businesses, telecommuters, government, and residents alike will benefit from creating economic stimulus, according to the Messenger.
Regarding the location, Anderson said that multiple sites were evaluated, and the recommended land took into consideration the area with “low visual impact that would provide the greatest ‘propagation’ or cell coverage.” Anderson also stated that the tower would be of no cost to the city and that a 35-year lease term is being negotiated with a revenue potential of $400,000.
As a next step, the proposal will go on to the planning commission for further study. According to council member Lon Pardun, “I believe that this process is very, very slowly getting started, so I believe there will be plenty of time for comment later.”