Scenic Nevada Issues: Cell Towers

Minimizing Cell Tower Impact

The popularity of cell phones continues to dominate modern culture. With the ease and convenience of instant communication in your pocket comes the reality that cell phone towers rising 70 to 100 feet are a necessity that punctuates the landscape of our cities and countryside.

As cell phone use climbs so does the need to provide more towers keeping us connected. Today, cell phone towers aren’t limited to locations along the highway. Competition for sites has caused them to appear along secondary roads, on neighborhood streets, in parks, and sometimes in scenic viewsheds.

Clearly, this proliferation of towers can lead to visual chaos, which is why communities need to develop code requirements classifying them as special uses requiring stringent review criteria, including public hearings. It gives citizens concerned by the height or placement of a tower proposed in their neighborhood the opportunity to weigh in on possible mitigations or ask for site-sensitive locations.

We advocate for incentives and controls to encourage wireless telecommunication companies to minimize the impact and visibility of their structures. Possibilities include camouflaging them to blend into the environment. We also encourage co-location so that multiple companies share space. Where appropriate we support neighborhood groups in public hearings concerning cell phone tower placements.