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Cingular Tower going in on Shinn Pond (7 replies)
I don't know how many people are aware that the city planning department is looking for community feedback this Thursday regarding approval to put a 50 foot tower on Shinn Pond. If you don't want this to happen, you need to be at the planning meeting this Thursday night.

For more details, contact Tim Pitsker at

 Carolyn Sutherland
Posted – 09/07/05 4:27pm by Lynn R Slater, updated or replied 09/13/05 4:25pm

 What do these towers look like? Are they atrocious or merely odd-looking?
Posted – 09/07/05 4:28pm by Lynn R Slater

 They often disguise them as trees although I doubt they would do that here.

Frankly it would be nice to get Cingular cell reception at home, I don't now. There is some concern about the radio energy emitted from these towers although it is unproven.

Rock Ave
Posted – 09/07/05 4:29pm by Lynn R Slater

According to the City of Fremont planning document about the tower:

Project Description: The applicant is proposing to construct a 55-foot tall olive green slim line monopole with six panel antennas. The antennas will be four square feet and mounted flush to the pole. The applicant will lease a 340 sq. ft. area for the related equipment and monopole. The equipment will be enclosed with a six-foot chain link fence, with green slats. The fence will be screened with fast growing vines. The applicant will hire a landscape company to water the vines. The site will not have an on-site generator, but the equipment would have an Appleton plug for portable generators. The applicant stated a portable generator might only be used in extreme cases, when the electricity is out for a long period of time and the operation of the site is essential for Cingular’s network. Future carriers that co-locate on this monopole would need to lease an area near the monopole from Alameda County Water District and receive Zoning Administrator approval. The applicant estimates that a technician will visit the site every four to eight weeks for routine maintenance. Access to the site will be through the Water District access road adjacent to 614 Hillview Drive.

The planning document also discusses visibility from Hillview/Montecito/Rancho Arroyo Park:

Analysis. The applicant will construct a 55-foot monopole and enclosure for the equipment. The monopole will be painted olive green to blend the pole with the trees and vegetation in the area. The pole will be taller than the existing trees in the area and portions of the pole will be visible from the adjacent Rancho Arroyo Park, Montecito Drive, and Hillview Drive. The pole will not be visible from most of the Niles district. The enclosure will use green slats and fast growing vines to screen the enclosure so it will blend in with the existing vegetation. The applicant has provided photosimulations of the proposed project. The monopole and equipment will be adjacent to an existing Water District facility enclosed by a six-foot fence with onefoot of barbwire. The site area for the project is the “developed” part of the property and it would not impact the existing landscaping in the area. Though the pole will be visible, it will not have a negative impact on the open space character of the site because it will only be partly visible from a limited distance and it will be located adjacent to the Water District’s facility.

I Street
Posted – 09/07/05 4:30pm by Lynn R Slater

There is a cellular tower on the east side of 680 going towards Pleasanton, actually before the first turn off. Its disguised as a tree; and unless someone points it out to you, you can pass right by and not notice it so the camouflage can work.
Posted – 09/07/05 4:31pm by Lynn R Slater

 They already have a Cingular Towar on the other side of Shinn Pond, pointing south. As I understand it, they could install another antenna to that pole and point it north to cover the area they are targetting with this new pole. They are also planning on putting in another pole at Papillon Restaurant after this pole goes in. I can't speak to the health issues folks claim that these cause. But the unnecessary visual blob doesn't make sense there.

For those folks that back up to Shinn Pond, having folks accessing the pole for maintenance would not be my choice.

Heck, they have a whole Quary Lake they can hide that slim line pole on that very few folks would care about.

Posted – 09/07/05 4:31pm by Lynn R Slater

The meeting is at 3300 Capitol Ave, Fremont, at the City Council Chambers, 7:00 pm Thursday Sept. 8.

The monopole will be located between Shinn Pond and Rancho Arroyo Park.  It will be built within 20' of a large tree so that the foliage of the tree will have to be cut away to allow the pole to protrude above the tree line.  It will be 55' tall, at least 8 feet above the trees.  It will be painted olive green.  It will have two rows of three antennas each 4' x 1' mounted parallel to the ground. It will be an eye sore, especially in winter when the tree looses its leaves.  It will be clearly visible from Alameda Creek, Shinn Pond, Niles Community Park and to a lesser degree Rancho Arroyo Park and the southern part of the Mission Lakes area.  It will also be visible from Montecito, Hillview and School St.  Cingular can accomplish the same goals by means (although more inconvenient) other than with this monopole.

-- Tim Pitsker

Posted – 09/08/05 2:49pm by Lynn R Slater

I did go and speak to the Planning Commission
We lost and I am preparing an appeal to the City Council.  The Planning Commission's decision held that a tree pole instead of the monopole is to be installed and that Cingular is not to cut any of the adjacent trees without permission from the City. 

The Commission did not understand that the plans indicate that the communications tower will be about 20 feet from the base of a large tree and a significant amount of canopy will have to cut away to install any monopole or tree pole.  There are two other large trees in the near vicinity and the branchs of the three trees grow together to form nice canopy.  A larger amount of tree or trees will have to be cleared for the tree pole because it has to look just like a tree and therefore will cover much more area than the original monopole.  The tree pole will be made out of steel and will protrude through the deciduous trees.  It will look really weird, especially in winter when the deciduous trees loose their leaves. 

The Commisssion did not understand that monopoles are to be allowed only when the telecommunications company has exhausted all other possible alternatives. Cingular has not made a good faith effort to exhaust other options. Example #1--I brought up the issue that Cingular should use the monopole that currently exists on Shinn St on the other side of Alameda Creek or some other facility that could be constructed in the industrial area on that side of the Creek. RESPONSE BY CINGULAR--The monopole on Shinn St. belongs to another company. And signals cannot be sent from that location because the signal will reflect off of the lakes causing it to deteriorate and be mitigated when it gets to the trees. This argument makes no sense because even if a signal is mitigated by a lake, only a poriton of the radio waves hit the lake.  Radio waves are like light waves, they go in all directions.  If you have a light on the opposite side of a lake and you look at it, you will see the light even though part of the light does reflect off of the lake.

Example #2---I suggested that a roof top mount on one of the unused buildings in niles be used.  RESPONSE BY CINGULAR--It would be too far.  To beef up the signal so it would go farther would deteriorate the network. He said that signals from different towers do not overlap.  This argument also makes no sense.  They do overlap.  When user moves away from one tower the signal gradually gets weaker.  But as the person moves into a new area the weaker signal is overlapped by a new signal and a central communications facility switches the signal to the now closer tower in the new area.  If they did not overlap there would certainly be gaps and dropped calls.  There is no reason why a slightly stronger signal cannot be sent from a roof top or a facade mount from one of the unused buildings in Niles.  They are easy to hide, not like a 55'  monopole.  It is only a mile away from the Rancho Arroyo and School St neighborhoods. Even if there was a signal in these neighborhoods that was interfered with, it would not be an issue because Cingular has already indicated that the signal in the neighborhoods are insufficient for proper coverage.


1.   Jason Trollope stated that Cingular is interested in co-locating on other poles. But he stated that he did not know anything about Cingular's appliction to co-locate on a proposed monopole at the Papillion restaurant on Mission Blvd. This Pole will be owed by Sprint and is slightly under a mile from the propose pole next to Shinn Pond----My positon is that Cingular can co-locate on this pole and therfore not need a pole next to Shinn Pond. 

2.   Jason Trollope stated that a signal coming from the Shinn St side of Alameda Creek towards Rancho Arroyo Park would be compromised by Shinn Pond. Yet he stated that a primary reason for the Pole by Shinn Pond woud be for the safety of People along Alameda Creek.  Yet the signal will have to cross either Shinn Pond or Quarry Lakes to get to the Creek.  So if the signal is compromised coming towrds Niles over the lakes, why is it not compromised going away from Niles back across the sames lakes?  In another portion of his testimony, Jason Trollope stated that a second carrier, on the Pole next to Shinn Pond, needed to be high enough to go past Quarry Lakes.  This second carrier would be lower down the pole from Cingular's antenni.  Therefore if a competing carrier can have a useable signal going over the lakes, then why can't Cingular.

3.   Jason Trollope stated that Cingular had no intention of cutting any of the trees, however the monopole or the tree pole cannot be installed without cutting one or more of the trees.

4.   Jason Trollope stated that they had exhausted all other possible options.  However, he had not contacted other carriers to determine if Cingular could co-locate and therby avoid building another monopole.  Carolyn Sutherland testified that she has T Mobile with excellent reception. Jason Trollope did not know where the T Mobile tower is located. He did not know how high a building would have to be for a roof top antenna to insure adequate coverage.  So how could he have possibly checked out all the other options? 

I also told the Commission that, as required by Fremont City Ordinances, a mock facility be constructed on the construction site before any final authoization be granted. The Commission overruled my demand.  I have subsequently talked to Dominick Dutra, a Fremont Council Person.  He agrees with me that the Commission's decision was premature, a mock facility should have been constructed first, so people can see how it looks. So I should win the appeal on this issue.  However, hopefully, we won't get that far.

In my appeal, I will continue to argue that a monopole or tree tower doesn't belong in the middle of five beautiful park areas, Shinn Pond, Rancho Arroyo park, Alameda Creek, Quarry Lakes and Niles Community Park.

These are some of the issues I am working on.

It would be a great help if a large number of people would come to speak to the City Council.  Even if the speaker only talked for 20 seconds it would help to have a lot of people there.  I submitted a petition with 108 names, but this is not the same as people speaking face to face to the Council.  If anyone is interested, have them contact me and we can coordinate who says what.



Posted – 09/13/05 4:25pm by Lynn R Slater

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