PUBLIC HEARING AGENDA REQUEST
Planning Commission Meeting Date:
H., and Nelson D. Martin, Owners
Robert C. Counts Community Development
District: Cedar Run
Service District: None 7914-33-2804-000
Topic: SE03-CR-29: A Category 20 Special Exception to Allow a Telecommunications Tower in Excess of 80 feet, William H., and Nelson D. Martin, Owners, AT&T Wireless Services (AWS), Applicant;
The Applicant is seeking a Special Exception to allow installation and operation of an unmanned, wireless radio link. This radio link will consist of three (and possibly as many as six) panel antennas installed on a 105-foot tall monopole. The antennas will each measure no more than 75’H x 5”W x 3”D. An equipment cabinet (70”H x 54”W x 38”D) will be placed on a concrete pad near the base of the monopole as per attached site plan. One equipment cabinet will be installed initially with up to two additional cabinets to be installed in the future. The entire facility will be within a 2500 square foot compound surrounded and secured by a 6’ tall fence.
The Applicant states that the proposed radio link is a necessary
component of the area-wide system that AWS is deploying in
AWS states that it was unable to locate any sufficiently tall structures within the area where its network plan requires a radio link in order to work effectively and efficiently with other existing or planned facilities to provide the most reliable and comprehensive coverage possible. After searching within a 2-mile radius of the proposed site, AWS states that it was unable to identify an existing structure that presented a collocation opportunity that would provide adequate signal coverage; nor was it able to locate other raw land within its search ring for installation of a new monopole that offered comparable signal coverage or superior screening opportunities to what is available at the proposed site.
Land Area, Zoning, and Neighboring Land Use:
property is located on the north side of
Requested of the Board of Supervisors:
The Board of Supervisors is requested to conduct a public hearing on SE03-CR-29 and consider the recommended resolution of denial.
application was considered by the Planning Commission at its meeting on
County’s telecommunications consultants, Atlantic Technology Consulting
(ATC), did not conduct an additional formal analysis of service levels
resulting from the proposed reduction in height from 120 feet to 105 feet
at the Martin site. However, follow-up telephone discussions with ATC
indicate that the Applicant’s contention of minimal loss of service is
consistent with ATC’s earlier finding that the gain in service
associated with the Martin site is marginal to begin with. ATC concurs
that the loss of service resulting from a lower tower height will be
negligible at either 105 feet or the by-right height of 80 feet.
propagation modeling shows that with the approval of the Elmore tower, the
key to AWS service levels in this area is not a location at the Martin
site, but the already approved collocation on the existing Crown tower
located near Route 28 in the Catlett area. According to ATC’s modeling,
AWS’s collocation on the Crown tower at a height of 145 feet will result
in the closing of virtually all significant gaps in service between the
Crown tower and the Elmore site. ATC’s analysis indicates that an
additional tower at the Martin site will add some level of service to the
area, bringing it closer to 100% coverage, but the absence of this
additional coverage would not constitute a significant gap in service. In
addition to its own modeling, ATC also evaluated the analysis of Bechtel,
the Applicant’s technical consultant. ATC found a differential of less
than 3% between the two assessments of level of service resulting from a
tower located on the Martin property. This additional analysis supports
the ATC finding of only marginal service gain.
identified four options as the Planning Commission’s response to this
request. Despite the proposed reduction in tower height, ATC’s options
and recommendations remain unchanged:
Option 1: Allow
the Applicant to build the site as requested (i.e. 105 feet).
Option 2: Allow
the Applicant to construct an 80-foot wood monopole, which will reduce the
visual impact that is presented in the package submitted under profile
views to the surrounding resident(s). Propagation models indicate that a
decrease in overall height of the structure with the collocation on the
Crown tower would not reduce the overall coverage in the area.
Option 3: Allow
the Applicant to construct an 80-foot silo type stealth structure on the
hilltop/cleared pasture area of the property well away from the flood
plain as outlined in the submitted site plans, thereby reducing all visual
impact to the surrounding residential area(s). The Applicant would be able
to further reduce any gaps in coverage by utilizing the mentioned Crown
tower for collocation.
Option 4: Deny
the application for the proposed 105-foot structure. The Applicant’s
intent to collocate on the Crown site as mentioned significantly reduces
the need for an additional site in the area.
recommended that the Applicant pursue an 80-foot structure of the type
outlined in either Option 2 or Option 3.
After conducting a public hearing on SE03-CR-29, the Planning
Commission concurred with ATC’s recommendation. The Planning Commission
recommends denial of Special Exception request SE03-CR-29 based on the
provisions of the Zoning Ordinance for a special exception are not met in
this application; the Commission found that the proposed facility would
negatively impact the public health, safety and welfare of residents of
proposed use will hinder and discourage the appropriate development and
use of adjacent land and impair the value of adjacent land in violation of
Sections 5-006, 11-101 and 11-102 of the Zoning Ordinance.
proposed use will be incompatible with existing or planned development in
the general area and the Comprehensive Plan.
proposed use fails to comply with and is not in conformity with the
applicable standards of Article 5 and Article 11 of the Zoning Ordinance
and all other applicable requirements of the Zoning Ordinance.
property, which is the subject of this special exception request, has
available to it other existing reasonable permitted, special exception and
special permit uses.
existing and potential locations are suitable to serve the proposed use.
proposed site, at the elevation proposed, is not necessary in order to
afford cellular service in the affected area.
alternatives to afford cellular coverage in the affected area exist or are
Board of Supervisors choose to approve SE03-CR-29, staff recommends that
such approval be subject to the following conditions:
This Special Exception is subject to the provisions of
Article 12 of the Fauquier County Zoning Ordinance, Site Plans, as may be
determined by the Fauquier County Department of Community Development.
Any plans submitted pursuant to this Special Exception shall be in
conformance with the Special Exceptions Exhibits submitted by AT&T
Wireless Services, LLC, Site Number: 005-017
2. The Special Exception is granted for and runs with the land indicated in this application and is not transferable to other land.
3. This Special Exception is granted only for the purpose(s), structure(s) and/or uses indicated on Special Exception plat approved with the application, as qualified by these development conditions.
4. The use shall comply with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Federal Communications Commission requirements at all times.
5. This approval is for a monopole tower with a tower height not exceeding 105 feet.
Prior to site plan
approval, the Applicant shall obtain an official FAA air hazard
There shall be no
signals or lights or illumination on any antenna, unless required by state
or federal authorities, or the county.
8. The antennas shall be flush-mounted to the pole in order to minimize the visual impact.
9. A 6-foot chain link fence shall surround the area. The area shall be large enough to allow future shelters to be accommodated.
10. The structure shall be sited within a stand of trees of a minimum 100-foot radius depth.
11. The dual-polarized antennas, the pole and related equipment cabinets shall all be within the size and height limitations specified in the Ordinance.
12. Antennas and pole shall be finished in non-reflective materials of matching color.
13. The equipment cabinet(s) shall also be finished in a neutral, non-reflective material.
14. There shall be no commercial advertising on the site.
15. All ground equipment shall be within a 2,500 square foot fenced and secured area that shall be surrounded by mature woodland and shall be virtually undetectable from public ways or abutting properties.
The limits of clearing and grading for the entire 55.5-acre
parcel shall be indicated on the site plan.
To the extent possible, existing mature tree stands shall remain.
There shall be no disturbance beyond the indicated limits of
clearing and grading. The Applicant
shall not remove existing trees within 200 feet of the site except as
authorized to permit construction of the facility and provide for
vehicular access to the site.
17. Prior to the issuance of the Zoning Permit, at least one (1) telecommunications provider shall have an executed lease with the Applicant. The Owner/Applicant shall provide collocation opportunities to other carriers so long as it is technologically possible. The Applicant shall provide written documentation to the Fauquier County Zoning Administrator in the event that any future collocation cannot be accomplished.
Any antenna or tower shall be disassembled and removed from
the site within 90 days of the discontinuance of the use of the tower for
wireless telecommunications purposes.
Removal includes the removal of the antennas, telecommunication
towers, fence footers, underground cables and other related
equipment/structures. If there
are two (2) or more users, then this provision shall not become effective
until all users cease using the tower.