Town Wants Their Flagpole Back


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The Southboro (MA) Town Council has flagged Crown Castle for not meeting the terms of its lease. Sometimes a flagpole isn’t just a flagpole – in Southboro, it has been doubling as an antenna for years. The company has since upgraded to a more substantial tower leaving the town with an empty pole that is presently inoperative in many ways. It is even unable to fly a flag, according to

Lease terms indicate that Crown Castle does have an obligation to return the flagpole to its original appearance. A recent meeting of the town’s selectmen had them in agreement that the flagpole changes were unauthorized. The selectmen demanded that the flagpole did not need a redesign, merely a return to its original operable flagpole stature.  

Town Administrator Mark Purple picked up the flag banner, ready to do battle with Crown Castle, whom Purple speculated would be slow to respond to the request. Purple reported back to the selectmen, indicating that he pursued the matter with both the developer and AT&T who he said were unresponsive. The lease for the flagpole expires at the end of the month.

A town meeting brought forth suggestions on how to handle the situation if they do not get satisfaction from Crown Castle. An idea was floated to knock down the existing structure and bill the telco for its replacements. A more punitive-minded citizen suggested cutting the power to the antenna during its final days of operation. While a final decision was not reached, those attending the meeting agreed that they shared a sense of frustration concerning the fate of their flagpole, and might be seeking legal action to remedy it.   

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