Proposed Cell Tower Sparks Cancer Fears For Residents
Some say if the tower's built, they will move.Photo: Video by kmtv.com
Omaha, NE -- Some homeowners who live near 35Th and Center say they fear cancer, radon, and asbestos. All of that came-up Thursday night over a 150-foot cell phone tower. The fight against AT&T building the tower has been going on for 3 months, and a meeting with Hanscom Park and Field Crest Neighborhood Associations proved the battle against the cell giant is far from over
The proposed 150 foot cell phone tower at 35Th and Center has neighbors fighting to keep it out of their back yard. Sue Schlesinger owns two businesses that will be directly across from the tower if it's built. Sitting at a table at the back of a room, Sue shouts, "You have tax paying citizens who are trying to protect their health and their economic investment in their community."
Many residents told AT&T's contractor that the tower is "ugly" and that it's "intrusive". Sam Mandolfo is the man tasked to find a suitable location for AT&T's new tower. He fired back to those who say it's not welcome by saying, "And every neighborhood also wants to be able to dial 911 emergency services."
Field Club Neighborhood homeowner Kevin Wyatt says there's cause for concern, but says when you look across the city they're everywhere. Kevin Wyatt explains, "If you look there's hundreds of them. Should there be? I don't know that's a good question."
So is Kevin for or against the proposed tower? "As a property owner, I would rather it not be here. As a AT&T cell user, I understand why they want to put it here. I don't have good service in this neighborhood, so for them to be competitive they need the cell tower here," Wyatt says.
Mandolfo says, "Our original marching orders were we want to go to the Center Mall to the top of the VA Hospital because that will improve our signal and significantly provide services to the hospital and the areas to the north that are being blocked by the hospital."
The biggest issue is the risk of deadly disease caused by radiation waves. Some say if the tower's built, they will move. Ashley Wilson and her husband are already looking for a new place. She says, "We've decided it's not worth it to us, for one of us even to have ill effects - even have our life shortened or have our daughters life shortened we won't put up with it and we will leave."
Mandolfo says he will look at alternative sites in the area. The Douglas County Planning Board will discuss the cell tower and it's future December 5Th.
Reported By: Liz Dorland, firstname.lastname@example.org