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Thursday, October 7, 2010

Scotch Plains votes on cell tower in Hillside Cemetery

Scotch Plains' Hillside Cemetery abuts Plainfield, South Plainfield and Edison.
Deceased Plainfielders now residing in Scotch Plains' Hillside Cemetery may finally get some peace and quiet. At least temporarily.

Plainfield activist Nancy Piwowar called late last evening to report that the township's Zoning Board of Adjustment voted down a use variance for the T-Mobile cell tower proposal about 10:30 PM in a 7-0 vote on the grounds it was not a permitted use in a residential area.

The proposal is one of two that T-Mobile has had before the township since last March for cell towers at different locations. The other is for one in the Willow Grove section of the township, opposition to which has generated a citizen-run website, Fight the Tower Online (see here).

Piwowar says she has attended the last three hearings on the Hillside Cemetery proposal -- in opposition to which Plainfield's City Council passed a resolution which was forwarded to the Scotch Plains board -- and reports that at least 50 residents of Scotch Plains and surrounding towns have been in attendance at each.

Hillside Cemetery, situated at the edge of Scotch Plains, abuts Plainfield, South Plainfield and Edison residential neighborhoods as well as the Plainfield County Club.

The 125-foot tower would have been 'disguised' as a pine tree (if you've not seen one of these, check out the tower in the GSP median at the New Durham Road overpass in Woodbridge township).

Piwowar notes that questioning of T-Mobile's expert witness revealed that the proposed site was not the best one in the cemetery for optimal coverage, and also that 40% of the tower's coverage area would be THE CEMETERY ITSELF.

Perhaps those interred in Hillside Cemetery want to reach out and touch someone?

Oops! That's another phone company!

There is an irony here, as we all become more and more dependent on cellphones to communicate, these towers must spring up or we will suffer many more dropped calls and one-bar performance.

Plus one last irony, Nancy's report was made on her cellphone.

-- Dan Damon [follow]


Rob said...

Your commentary caused a chuckle here and

Anonymous said...

Dan, I would have attended .... but my cell phone dropped the connection . {Mr Wise Guy, aka NIMBY]

Anonymous said...

What would this city do without Nance? God bless her!

Anonymous said...

Hey Dan, just an FYI - there are many other less invasive technologies other than cell towers. We proved it at our meetings that helped us win the other night.