City of Regina developing guidelines on cell tower locations

Nearly everyone relies on cellphones but no one wants a cell tower in front of their house.

The City of Regina is now developing guidelines on where cell towers can be located, after residents in two Regina neighbourhoods voiced strong opposition to proposed towers near their homes.

A 45-metre high tower is being proposed by SaskTel to serve the Harbour Landing neighbourhood.

Roy Churisnoff, a Harbour Landing property owner said the tower would be located in a big fenced in area near their house. He and his wife, Charlene, believe it violates guidelines.

“According to the guidelines that the city posted, a tower that‘s over 45 meters in height should be at least two times it’s height away from the nearest residential property and right now the proposed location is about 10 meters away,” he said.

“Our condo is right there. It obstructs the view. It ruins the entrance to the park,” Charlene said.

Those guidelines are only proposals according to the city, which is currently working on an actual policy.

“We’re looking for input from the public on what’s called our draft cell phone tower protocol. What this means is there are kind of guidelines that will gives cell phone tower providers a little more guidance in terms of where the city prefers or maybe doesn’t prefer future cell phone tower locations,” said Manager of City Planning, Ben Mario.

Some residents of Wascana View are concerned about a planned tower for their neighborhood. The airport also has an interest.

“The city does a great job about ensuring developers pass on the development referral through to us so we can have that assessment done,” said James Bogusz, CEO of Regina Airport Authority.

SaskTel said it will consult with all individuals involved.

“SaskTel is aware that the City of Regina has put forward a proposal to implement an antenna systems policy. This isn’t all that unusual. Other cities in the province have it,” Greg Jacob with SaskTel said.

Federal regulators have the final say on where cell towers are located. Generally, if a neighbourhood objects and wins the support of the municipality, the regulator will recommend that a compromise be reached.