APA Logo

For Immediate Release: September 22, 2010

Keith P. McKeever | keith.mckeever@apa.ny.gov 
Public Relations | Adirondack Park Agency | Press Office | (518) 891-4050

APA Approves Another General Permit Application for Telecommunication Projects; Issues Over 125 Cellular Permits

RAY BROOK, NY - At the September Adirondack Park Agency (APA) meeting, the agency board authorized general permit application 2010G-1 designed to further streamline telecommunication project approvals. General Permit 2010G-1 fast tracks review of new or replacement cellular towers proposed for locations in proximity to previously approved agency sites.

This is the second general permit developed by agency staff to expedite telecommunication project approvals. Since 2005, cellular companies relied heavily on General Permit 2005G-3R to co-locate equipment on existing tall structures. The general permit process is less rigorous and results in cost savings for cellular companies.

In 2010, the APA issued fourteen permits to date resulting in 6 new towers, 6 replacements, and 2 co-locations. Fourteen additional applications are under review. In 2009, the agency approved 31 applications. This included 14 new towers, 14 co-location projects, 1 replacement and 2 replacement/co-location permits.

Additionally this year, APA participated in the Technical Assistance Center's organizational meeting in support of their Wireless Clearinghouse Project. Project goals include the identification of tall structures throughout the Park for potential co-location sites to foster more cellular company investment in Park communities. Cellular coverage will improve as approved projects are undertaken. Construction has not started however on many permitted tower sites located in Essex, Franklin, Hamilton and Warren Counties. A number of these permits were issued in 2009.

Chairman Curtis F. Stiles said, "The APA realizes comprehensive coverage along travel corridors and near population centers is only possible with planning and additional capital investment. We've worked diligently with the carriers to approve over 125 permits throughout the Park resulting in increased coverage in this topographically challenging region of New York State. We remain committed to working with carriers as they plan for this critical infrastructure."

Executive Director Terry Martino stated, "The APA fully understands the importance of cellular and broadband technology to support economic development and public safety. The horizontal co-location general permit will provide carriers the opportunity to improve cellular coverage while reducing their capital expenditure costs. We appreciate their input on this application and their continued commitment to implement wireless technology in accordance with state law."

The APA, working with stakeholder groups, developed a Telecommunication and Tall Structure Policy in 2002. The policy was established to expedite implementation of critical telecommunication infrastructure in conformity with the statutory requirements of the Adirondack Park Agency Act. The policy has resulted in improved cellular coverage for Adirondack communities especially along highway corridors and in population centers. It is important to note improved coverage has not adversely impacted the Adirondack Park's high-value scenic landscape or dramatically altered the unique community character of this region. These factors are fundamental components of the Park's economy.

The policy includes guidance for telecommunication companies to ensure successful implementation of projects. Guidance includes: avoiding locating facilities on mountaintops and ridge lines; concealing any structure by careful siting, using a topographic or vegetative foreground or backdrop; minimizing structure height and bulk; using color to blend with surroundings; and using existing buildings to locate facilities whenever possible.

2010 Cellular Permit Activity by Carrier

8 Verizon Wireless: 5 new towers 3 replacement/co-location

4 AT&T: 1 co-location 3 replacement/co-location

2 T-mobile: 1 new Towers 2 replacement/co-location

14 applications under review:

2 Chester (Independent Towers/Verizon Wireless) 1 Clifton (Verizon Wireless) 1 Chesterfield (Verizon Wireless) 1 Minerva (Verizon Wireless) 1 Fine (Verizon Wireless) 1 Dresden (Verizon Wireless) 1 Port Henry (Verizon Wireless) 1 Dresden (Independent Towers) 1 Bolton (Independent Towers) 1 Duane (Verizon Wireless) 1 Caroga (Independent Towers) 1 Horicon (Independent Towers) 1 Hague (Independent Towers)

2009 Cellular Permit Activity by Carrier

8 Verizon Wireless: 5 New Towers 2 Co-locations 1 Replacement

18 T-Mobile: 6 New Towers 11 Co-locations 1 Replacement & Co-location

1 AT&T: 1 Co-location

Please visit the Adirondack Park Agencys website for more information on cellular towers. The general permit applications are available at: http://www.apa.state.ny.us/Forms/Alphabetical_Forms.html

The mission of the Adirondack Park Agency is to protect the public and private resources of the Adirondack Park through the exercise of the powers and duties of the Agency as provided by law. For more information, call the APA at (518) 891-4050 or visit www.apa.state.ny.us.