Belchertown residents continue to fight telephone tower proposal - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Belchertown residents continue to fight telephone tower proposal

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BELCHERTOWN, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -

More than 90 people have signed a petition called "Stop the Aldrich Street Tower" online. 

Residents packed a Planning Board meeting Tuesday night with one message: No cell towers in Belchertown neighborhoods.

"When we first heard about this proposed cell tower on our street, it kind of seemed shocking because we live on a street that has a lot of rural New England character to it," said resident Jennifer Faulkner.

Dozens spoke out against the proposed 140 foot telephone tower. Faulkner said when she moved here, this is not what she expected.

"I've lived in different environments, different cities, and more urban environments. I moved here to Belchertown for this very reason, to have a quiet place to live and just be surrounded by natural things. And, not cell towers," Faulkner says.

Verizon representatives presented their final proposal to the planning board committee.

"We feel that we have done as good a project as we could after a very lengthy time of being in the town and trying to find a location," said Verizon's Attorney Ellen Fryman.

Fryman says there is a demand for cell connectivity. Because of this, infrastructure must be increased to support that usage. Still, those who live in the area say, not in their backyards.

"One of the most imminent concerns is a decrease in property values. Associated with properties that have this up close and personal view of a cell tower. Judging from the photos, there are houses that have a tower view right from their yards," said Faulkner.

Tuesday night, the Planning Board decided to continue the meeting to August 25th to give Verizon more time to turn in additional documents. 

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