Friday 30 April 2010

Towering above Clifton mobile users

Over 400 Clifton Beach locals, including an appeal by Cairns Regional Council rejecting Telstra's original application for a 27 meter monopole, didn't stop this week's construction of the controversial tower.

"It looks exactly like we said it would back in September: a bloody eyesore," Marjorie Graham told CairnsBlog.

"You want to protect your community and we all stood up, but we lost."

The communications tower is situated in a residential area, on an existing Telstra exchange depot on the corner of Captain Cook Highway and Endeavour Road, opposite Clifton Village Shopping Centre.

Cairns Regional Council planners last year did not support communications tower construction on the proposed site.

"The proposal does not comply with Telecommunications Facilities Code of CairnsPlan, specifically P1 of the Community Safety Requirements," Council said at the time. "The submitter [Telstra] believes approval of the application will have detrimental health impacts."

Council said that the tower compromises the achievement of the 'scenic landscape', which states that the scenic landscape of the city is valued and enjoyed by residents and visitors, and the essential elements of this landscape, the forested hills and foothills and headlands, streams and rivers, wetlands, open spaces and rural land are conserved and enhanced.

I commented last year that the irony is everyone wants better mobile phone coverage, as we now surf the net with high-speed mobile connections, yet few want one of these monster transmitters in their back yard.

The concession Telstra offered, was to paint the tower a rather pretty bush green. It has a ring to it.


Clifton Ghost said...

Whilst the pole appears to be slim line at the moment with just one antennae on top, just wait till all the other Tel Co.s hang their bits off it and the Buchan Point tower is closed down and Telstra ramp up this one, then it really will be an "eyesore" to behold. Watch this space for the "before" and "after" photos!!!

I think that there is something very wrong with a system that allows a national company to erect such a contoversial piece of infrastructure in a residential area and which subsequently only through a court of law, was able to over ride community concerns (all 414 of them) and local government planning laws.

It appears to all that were involved in the case that commercial interests were held above all other kinds of vested interests including health, community, scenic, and the most basic one of need? Did we as a community really need this.

I was not aware that the basic needs of life have been upgraded from food, shelter and clothing to read "food, shelter, clothing and a 27m mobile tower next door to your shelter"!

Unknown said...

Well talk about eyesore... They would have been beter off spending money to upgrade the exchange to allow competition into the area for ADSL2+ then this monstrosity.

Oh well at least we only rent in clifton beach and our lease is up in a few months - we can move, unlike other folk who own there own houses it sucks

Telstra think they can walk over anyone and everyone and a law unto themselves...

But then can we trust the cairns council, who knows what was done to get this pole there

BTW we dont use telstra for mobiles!

Clifton Ratbag said...

While we're discussing beaches eyesores, anyone know what happened to Phil Hartwig and the scar he cut on the hillside above Palm Cove at Foley Road? All the so-called (tiny) allotments are sitting there slowly being reclaimed by the rainforest, and its said Hartwig lost the whole property to a bank. I drove up there last week just to take a look around, and the house is abandoned and all Phil's equipment is gone.

It's important to keep an eye on this site because the neighbor, Pam Buxton, is still trying to get permission to do the same to her portion of the slope - ten times the size of Hartwig's property.

Jude Johnston said...

Well said Clifton Ghost. Telstra weren't prepared to entertain any other options. The tower needed to be so high to get above the Shopping Centre, another building too big for a residential area. Clifton beach has another monstrosity at its gateways, the Glencorp uglies on both sides of Clifton Road and now the Telstra tower at the other entrance, and as CG says, wait until the other telcos start hanging their stuff on it.

Get a life said...

Well well well, 3 cheers to Telstra for the mobile tower. Now I might be able to get decent signal for my wireless modem.
Its a pity we all had to wait for an extra 2 years because of the NIMBY principle, to get an acceptable signal.
Cairns Blog stands condemned as well for given oxygen to this selfishness.

Jude Johnston said...

And the selfish one is???
There were other options for Telstra to use, the tower was the cheapest one for them. In other cities around the world, mini and micro cells are used, or telcos place sites unobtrusively in existing buildings, such as the Clifton Beach Shopping Centre. But then Telstra would have had to lease space wouldn't they.
You see, Get a Life, most of us just want to preserve the scenic beauty we are so lucky to live in. Your wireless modem will be superceded, why destroy the environment to give you short term pleasure.

Sue E said...

Don’t waste your breath Jude. “Get a life” is typical of the “Do I care!” [ DICS ] in this town. I’m sure “Get a life” offered Telstra his own backyard for the tower but naturally Telstra turned it down because it’s zoned Residential 1 and in a “community sensitive area.”

Telstra was after all, part of the committee that developed the Deployment of Mobile Phone Network Infrastructure Industry Code – you know the one that recognizes there is considerable public interest in avoiding sensitive sites and a need to respect communities’ sensitivities.

Guglielmo said...

Just think, all that EMF radiating from the Clifton tower. It will play havoc with the silver spoons!

Jude Johnston said...

Yep Sue E, I have come across quite a few of the DICS, until something happens that affects them and then you should hear them bleat. I guess I will just keep wasting my breath, cos I believe the preservation of the scenic beauty - the reason we all came to live here, and why the tourists come and spend their dollars, is far more important than the DICs of the world.

Ludfoot in mouth said...

It is frighteneing to think that towers such as this could also be used for multiplexed data transmission.

God help us all, these damn monoliths are now being used to communicate with blogsites!