Antenna sprawl could be curtailed in Greater Victoria

Local governments win consultation for cell tower placement

Score one for the little guy.

The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association, which oversees the industry, bowed to public pressure and agreed that telecoms should consult municipalities before installing new cell towers.

Municipalities can now make non-binding suggestions for optimal placement and esthetics of the towers, the federal body ruled last week.

The move is being celebrated by Esquimalt Coun. Dave Hodgins, who brought the resolution forward at last October’s Union of B.C. Municipalities conference in Victoria.

“It’s going to be in our municipal jurisdiction, so we need to be involved in the conversation,” he said.

As cell towers become more densely located in urban areas, discussions on esthetic integration are becoming more popular, Hodgins said.

“We should be looking at hidden design,” he said.

Last year, Vancouver considered replacing new cell towers with V-poles – concept streetlamps that include Wi-Fi, cell towers and even electric vehicle charging stations.

dpalmer@vicnews.com