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Alternative Sites Update

After the 10/24 hearing, we have heard feedback that some people were not clear about what alternative sites Verizon had looked at, and what sites they are currently looking at.

Here we want to give you an update on what we knew.

Before we talk about alternative sites, we want to emphasize that our main argument against Verizon's application is that Verizon's signal in the area is very good, so they don't need a new tower.

However, until we can convince the Planning Commissioners to believe Verizon has no need for a tower, our best option is to ask Verizon to move the tower's location away from school so its impact to our neighborhood is at  minimal. 
In their permit application submitted to San Jose Planning Department, Verizon provided a list of alternative sites they looked at. 

Those sites are shown in the below picture.

In their application, Verizon rejected all the alternative sites (other than the proposed location). Their excuse for the rejection is "the alternative sites are outside of Verizon's search ring", which is absolutely nonsense.

Before, as well as at the meeting with Verizon's representative on 4/16/2012, the core group of people from the neighborhood that worked on the appeal asked Verizon to look for more possible alternative sites, or revisit the alternative sites they rejected. 

More specifically, we asked Verizon to:

1. Look at the possibility of adding a roof mounted antenna on top of the closed Lunardi's (i.e. the location of the upcoming Walmart store in Evergreen Village).
2. Revisit the feasibility of the water tank. (marked at San Jose Water Co. in the above picture)

We asked Verizon to look into these two sites based on the following:

1. Both of the two sites are more than 1000 feet away from any school.
2. Both of sites have the smallest density of residential buildings in its surrounding area.

In general, these two sites are probably the least intrusive sites we can think of in the neighborhood.

At the 4/16/2012 meeting, Verizon insisted that top of Lunardi's does not work because it won't give them enough coverage.

A couple months after the meeting, we were told that San Jose Muni Water does not want their site to be used for new cell tower due to security concern. 

On the other hand, at the meeting, Verizon mentioned they will revisit the feasibility of "Plaza Dental' as a possible alternative. 

We (as the NoTower group) did not support the "Plaza Dental" as an alternative, nor did we oppose it. Because the site is only 600 feet away from another elementary school, but on the flip side, it would not be as intrusive as the proposed site which is only 200 feet away from an elementary school. So if it turns out to be the only possible alternative outcome, it would still be better than the currently proposed site, as far as the entire neighborhood is concerned.

From 4/16 (when Verizon mentioned they will look at Plaza Dental) to 10/24 (the public hearing), Verizon did not provide any update about their progress at this site. And Verizon stated that again in the hearing.

At the hearing, one of the commissioners asked why we insisted the hearing and not want to give Verizon more time to look at Plaza Dental. Well, first, we believe Verizon has no need for the tower. Second, there was no sign showing Verizon is really serious about any alternative site (even including Plaza Dental).

This pretty much covered all our knowledge about the alternative sites Verizon is or maybe looking at. Going forward, we hope Verizon will stick to their promise to allow a neutral and independent review of all their claims (signal gap as well as alternative site analysis) by a technical consultant hired by the city. We will keep you posted with any new update.

We also welcome your suggestions/feedback/comments, etc. You can send email to notoweree@gmail.com


NoTower Group