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Nose Under the Community Tent

By Paul Losch

About this blog: I was a "corporate brat" growing up and lived in different parts of the country, ending in Houston, Texas for high school. After attending college at UC Davis, and getting an MBA at Harvard, I embarked on a marketing career, mai...  (More)

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Cellular & NIMBY

Uploaded: Apr 4, 2011
Who among us know people who no longer have a land line phone?

There are many in generations younger that don't need or value such a thing. It is a dinosaur.

I was driving along Middlefield over the weekend, and across from the Little League Park were signs objecting to the notion of cellular telephone antennas being installed at the ball park.

I live near the church on Channing Avenue which also has offered to provide a place for additional cellular capacity.

The alleged reason for opposition, without evidence, is that these antennas are a health hazard.

Let's face it: cellular phones are here to stay. Land lines will go away, after a long and dignified service.

I am of the point of view that those objecting to antennas in their neighborhoods are the new NIMBYS.
What is it worth to you?


Posted by svatoid, a resident of ,
on Apr 4, 2011 at 10:37 am

I'll agree with you Paul. Amazing that Palo Alto, the epicenter of the Silicon Valley and the home of Stanford, has residents that display such ignorance when it comes to cell phone towers. We have people talking about health risks, decreased property values and other scare tactics in an attempt to prevent progress in the city. Let's face it, there are some people that want Palo Alto to remain the quaint little town it was 50 years ago--not going to happen.
We have people pitching hissy fits and convincing non-profits to cut off internet access to the city because they do not want a cell tower across the street from them--talk about NIMBYism!!!

Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of ,
on Apr 4, 2011 at 11:26 am

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

For once we agree. If it were not for DSL, I believe I would be total cellular.

Posted by just_the_facts_maam, a resident of ,
on Apr 4, 2011 at 12:12 pm

Some of the NO CELL TOWER signs you saw were posted on homes of folks who had attended a meeting with the "fake tree antenna" representative submitting the plan for the little league park, and when we were shown an actual photo of the current concealed antenna, the opponents (as well as the supporters who just want to have a usable cell phone) agreed that the appearance was greatly improved over current models or what we believed was going to be installed, and certainly not the freeway-side unsightly cell antenna on the flyers circulated by an opponent (and on the facebook page for the NO CELL TOWER opponents), both of which images grossly misrepresent what is proposed at the ball park. So even after agreeing that the proposed installation was of modest visual impact and that the RF radiation was significantly less than that emitted by appliances and WiFi equipment in the home, the NO CELL TOWER signs are up in the front yards of folks leaving that meeting expressing agreement that the visual impact was minimal. I am starting to think this is one of those "debates" where facts and accurate information is actually irrelevant compared to the pre-decided outcome.

Posted by AMRW, a resident of ,
on Apr 4, 2011 at 12:15 pm

"It is a dinasour"

Actually, it's a dinosaur.

I've posted here before. I'm begging you to use a spellcheck before you post.

Posted by trudy, a resident of ,
on Apr 5, 2011 at 6:29 am

I laugh every time someone has forgotten their cell phone at home, because they use it there due to no landline.

Posted by Resident, a resident of ,
on Apr 5, 2011 at 8:07 am

I love my cell phone, but I will not give up my land line. I do not like talking on my cell phone for anything other than a 30 second conversation for information. I do not like getting calls at inconvenient times in inconvenient places. I do not carry my cell phone around the house with me. I like being able to call home and speak to whoever is there to check if we need something while I am at the grocery store. I also see no need to give my cell number as an alternate for many times I need to leave a phone number.

It is possible that one day land lines will go away, but I will be one of the last.

I do think that cell etiquette should be promoted. Most people do not realise how rude, confusing and often dangerous it can be to use their cell phones as they turn off to reality while using them.

Posted by priorities, a resident of ,
on Apr 5, 2011 at 6:17 pm

Paul please remember: "It isn't what you say, it's how you spell it"!

Posted by John, a resident of ,
on Apr 5, 2011 at 6:32 pm

Are those people across from the Little League Park nuts? Did they drink the RF kool aid? Who is driving that paranoia? WEIRD!

Posted by Residents, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 8:21 am

Thanks Paul for using the word NIMBY. Not in my backyard. I hope our Palo Alto leaders stop using this word. The word is disparaging to People entitled to opinions about what they want in their community and near their property. And meant to discourage real opinion. Most everyone wouldn't want the negative impacts a cell tower provides. Name calling sends the message that those voicing an adverse opinion should feel bad about about a position - that most residents living away from the Towers wouldn't want in their backyard either. Let's stop the name calling message and consider the different positions instead.

Posted by svatoid, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 8:42 am

"Most everyone wouldn't want the negative impacts a cell tower provides."
What are the negative impacts? Please provide facts--not the hysterical and unfounded factoids provided by STuart et al.
But everyone wants cellphones and WiFi. right?

Posted by Resident, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 11:41 am

Last I looked most people seek property located near pools and beautiful parks, not a 50-foot-tall cell tower and nine antennas at St. Albert the Great Church on Channing Avenue Palo Alto.

The signs I see on Middlefield Road expressing disapproval of a cell tower is a great revelation. As people become politically active in the South Palo - they will create a strong policital voice as demonstrated. Great the area is expressing what they want or don't want located nearby. I like seeing those signs displayed. It seems some people don't want others to organize and express what they don't want in their neighborhood - thus the name calling.

No issue with Palo Alto placing cell towers in appropriate venues. Using words like hysterical and nimby really are disparaging words and don't add to this conversation.

Posted by svatoid, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 11:50 am

" Using words like hysterical and nimby really are disparaging words and don't add to this conversation."
Making claims about radiation and cell towers without knowing the facts and going against established findings is hysterical. Claiming that your property will lose it's value without providing any proof is hysterical. Not being aware of the facts and making outrageous claims in an attempt to bully the city are hysterical.

Sorry--that is what it is.

"No issue with Palo Alto placing cell towers in appropriate venues"
So tell us what is an "appropriate venue"?

Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 12:22 pm

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

"So tell us what is an "appropriate venue"?"
Out of sight and mind.
The sooner towers are declared essential public improvements the better.

Posted by Wondering?, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 12:27 pm

Wonder how many people, if given a map of Palo Alto, could put an "X" near the places where they know Cell Towers are located? If someone can't locate many, or even any, then how bad can they be?

Posted by Jim_H, a resident of ,
on Apr 6, 2011 at 7:15 pm

While we're at it, let's just ban sunlight in Palo Alto. I can document numbers of people who have exprerienced basal cell carcinoma (I'm one - successfully treated with surgery) and malignant melanomas. I don't know anyone who has experienced cancer through "cell-phone" radiation.

Ban the sun from Palo Alto. Who cares if we all freeze together as long as we don't have to experience the horror of invisible "radiation".

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