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Greenwich Residents Don't Want New Cell Tower

GREENWICH, Conn. – Greenwich residents voiced opposition to the possibility of AT&T constructing a cell tower on top of a water tower on Valley Road. They argued against the possible environmental, visual, and real estate value harm the tower might cause if it were approved.

Peter Moss, a River Road resident, called the proposal not only “lousy” but “abusive” as well. “[It’s] abusive to the neighbors who live so close to it, abusive to the public because it adds an ugly projection to the view of an ugly pond … but most of all, abusive to just about every concept we have of watershed and water supply protection,” he said at a public hearing of the cell tower Thursday night.

AT&T wants to build a 17½-foot concealed tower on top of a 40-foot Aquarion Water Co. water tower at 455 Valley Road. The Connecticut Siting Council went on a tour and conducted a hearing with AT&T earlier Thursday. The council has the final say over where a cell tower, if any, would be placed.

Residents expressed concern over and over for the environmental impacts a cell tower might have on the area. Just over the border on King Street, a leaky backup generator at a Verizon facility spilled more than 900 gallons of diesel fuel into a pond. Though AT&T is not proposing building a backup generator for the tower, some residents were dubious. “It wasn’t supposed to happen, there were failsafes, there was everything in place, and guess what? It happened,” said Rick Harris, a River Road resident.

Robert Luzzy, a Chestnut Street resident, said that eight months ago, when he and his wife bought a house to raise their two children, they checked into how the Aquarion Water Tower could be used in the future. His wife got a copy of the deed, provided by the town to Aquarion, that states that the tower is to be used for water purposes.

“To layfolks like us, this unambiguous language seems to very clearly limit the land to water use,” said Luzzy, adding his real estate attorney reviewed the deed as well. “As you can imagine my wife and I are now horrified that AT&T and Aquarion are considering a cell tower on this site, as no reasonable person can conclude that cell has any connection whatsoever with water use.”

The Connecticut Siting Council has to wait at least 30 days after Thursday’s hearing to make a decision on whether to approve the cell tower on Valley Road.

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