Cell Tower Craziness

By Loudoun Insider

I simply don’t get the hysteria from some of the preservationist types over cell towers. Everyone knows I’m for slow growth, primarily from a taxation standpoint, but also for environmental and preservation reasons. But as anyone who drives through western Loudoun knows, cell service sucks. As does easy access to high speed internet.

Would I rather not see a tower? Sure, but this is getting ridiculous and the camoflage efforts for these towers were innovative and reasonable. You know what I hate to see more than a cell tower? Loads and loads of new houses sucking up tax dollars, and blame for that goes back a long way – especially if you see the surroundings of Round Hill, where cell service is especially crummy.

So many of the new supervisors touted more telecommuting as a way to reduce road trips, but then voted against a reasonable plan that would make that infinitely more possible. Praise goes to Scott York and Lori Waters for being truly business friendly.


  • Guess they don’t need no steenkin’ Internet out there …

  • Elder Berry says:

    Most people in western Loudoun who care about fast internet have already gotten and are generally happy with satellite or Roadrunner service, which don’t require polluting the whole landscape with ugly equipment. I know of only one stretch where my cell phone has problems and it’s not a big deal to me. Switch carriers if you have major issues. anyway, you can have cell towers up the yingyang and you still will get dropouts. My daughter lives inside the beltway in an area covered with cell towers and when she calls my land line she still drops out half the time.

    I find the whole obsessive attachment to cell phones, such that if you can’t make a cell call for 10 seconds you have a fit or go into withdrawal, very odd and actually pretty sicko.

    It”s not just the towers, it’s the fences and boxes at the bottom of them, which are not insubstantial. It’s almost impossible to put them in without removing more trees, unless you plop them right out in a bare field (ugh) or co-locate them with existing structures. However, not enough applicants want to bother to co-locate, and even then they dominate the horizon, because they have to stick out above everything else, that’s the point. The fewer the locations, the higher up they stick. I’m sorry, a huge green “tree” is an odd man out in our hardwood forest for 6 months out of the year. The darn things were designed for mixing with California redwoods, not our maples, oaks and sycamores.

    The issue for me with cell towers is that they are already obsolete technology. Why not have fiber optic? It makes more sense. Or, look at the size of the Hughesnet antennas now and realize that in a couple of years they will be able to put them on your cars. A couple of years later and they will be in the phones.

    So in a decade who will take down all the dead cell towers? Not the ones what put em up, I’ll guarantee you.

    I’m very disappointed with Ms. Waters and Mr. York. They should have known better and been more forward thinking. The county needs an updated and modern telecommunications policy, not more cell towers. The excuse of emergency service is just that, an excuse. I know lots of business people in the west and none of them complains about needing more cell antennas.

    Mr. Gordon is mad about what he got, but he shouldn’t even have gotten the one tower he did get, much less the other ones. Fix the county policy before you go handing out locations.

  • only 2 bars says:

    There are other options out there folks. I have heard that the guys who put the two cool towers in Cascades (one next to the Bloom and at the Safety Center) have some applications coming up for Western Loudoun. I think their name is Invisible Towers or something like that, i have read about them.

    There is a need, but clearly they have to blend in perfectly to their environment. There has to be a balance between ascetics and service.

  • 10 feet tall and Bulletproof says:

    I’m with 2 bars on this one. We live in the 21st century now, and technology can give us both. Make a market for it, and it will be delivered.
    While I understand the need for service, I also don’t need to see the service provider’s equipment.
    And I offer all that as one with NO deadspots out here. My wife’s carrier doesn’t even cover her in the house or the barn, but I can talk ANYWHERE with mine. Choose your carrier by the best available map of coverage, not by the wishes that they will innovate to please your needs, while destroying the pristine experience of others to accomodate you..

  • G. Stone says:

    Oh look a new cell tower .
    Where ?
    We just passed it .
    Oh well ,I will see it next time.

    Honey what is that off in the distance ?
    That is a cell tower Dear.
    Oh, what do you want to have for dinner ?

    Sometimes you get alittle Chicken Shit with your Chicken salad.

    It is a cell tower get over it !

  • Aesthetics should be part of any cell tower company’s business plan. Some people (less and less mind you, in this age of sensory misers) do give a crap about their view sheds and the creeping-ugly that we look at more and more every day.

    Bob, you don’t get to make money by putting up ugly crap around the landscape. Figure out a better way.

    If I get chicken shit in my chicken salad, I don’t eat lunch there anymore.

  • Suzanne Volpe says:

    Just as reference, when the county has previously approved a cell tower location, it is put in the approval process that when the company discontinues use of the facility, it must be removed within 30 days. This is a binding, legal document. As one of the commenters stated earlier, if all this becomes obsolete in 10 years, then the cell towers will come down.

  • 10 feet tall and Bulletproof says:

    Suzanne, in business, cheaper is sometimes sought after by providers unless there is a stringent push for a new technology. I thank you for pointing out that they will dissappear when that new technology renders them obsolete… but I’d also point out that the citizens should push the carriers to pursue and install that new technology as soon as it is readily available…which by some accounts here…is already available.We lose control of the process the minute we “sign off” on less than was available today, because we care so little about our own neighbors and their quality of life.In many cases, we don’t hold the company accountable to maintain the very quality of life that we were seeking when we made the decision to stop and settle down here.

  • Lee J says:

    The problem is the proposed towers just need to blend in more . No more no less. It all goes back that Loudoun has a chance to be beautiful and still be beautifully correct. Lets set the standard for the nation and not trashing out this county. You can have architectural or natural beauty and still have what everyone wants.

  • Common Idiot says:

    Kudos to Lori Waters and Scott York for having the common sense to vote for such the towers. (By the way, where was Eugene in all that?). As previous commenters noted, the towers are no big deal aesthetically or otherwise – get over it western Loudoun and get with the 21st century.

  • Laura V says:

    A tower was approved in Taylorstown, less than 2 miles north of me and I already have high speed thanks to lucketts.net. I also get great cell phone reception through Taylorstown all the way to Lovettsville and in Round Hill, even when you got off the bypass there. Greg Stone reminds me off Delgaudio who only found out in a Board meeting that Loudoun County is actually home to a good deal of corn fields and cows.

  • 10 feet tall and Bulletproof says:

    Look, Common idiot…You seem perfectly content with the way Sterling and Ashburn look now…and that’s fine. There is a contingent out here that moved from that area to get further away from what you find to be acceptable.
    I’m not knocking there as being less than out here. What I am pointing out is that we have completely different outlooks and thresholds for where we are prepared to live and accept in our respective neighborhoods. And visable towers is not something that is acceptable out here, just as the concept of eminent domain and redevelopment are not acceptable there. I’ll back you on that, and fight with you to keep it from occurring, but it’s a two way street, friend.

  • 10 feet tall and Bulletproof says:

    I want to re-word the above, as I think it could be read wrong. I’ll fight ALONGSIDE of you to keep eminent domain and redevelopment from occurring in your neighborhoods. You need to step up and fight unsightly towers in my neighborhood so that we have mutual appreciation for each other’s quality of life.

  • 10 feet tall and Bulletproof says:

    Whoever appeals to the law against his fellow man is either a fool or a coward. Whoever cannot take care of himself without that law is both. For a wounded man shall say to his assailant, ‘If I live, I will kill you. If I die, You are forgiven.’ Such is the rule of honor.

  • G. Stone says:

    I was hunting, hiking and fishing those very fields and streams of western loudoun before you were born or even knew where Loudoun County was. I suspect I have forgotten more about rural loudoun county than you will ever know.
    Engaging in gratuitous assertions is becoming a trend with you. Check your emotions at the door , engage in conversation minus the knee jerk personal attacks. Use something other than your dislike of me to motivate dialog.
    Talk about things you know or shut up.

  • Common Idiot says:

    10 feet,

    I respect your agenda in resisting development efforts in western Loudoun, but, you have to admit, development is inevitable. I don’t fault you for making your voice heard (and, in fact, I applaud your involvement). Frankly, it’s all the same to me — the cell towers out there won’t make any difference in my quality of life one way or another.

  • Yikes. Sounds like G got a little too much chicken shit in his last helping of soup.

    10 feet, isn’t that quote from the Mafia or something?

    What has happened to this thread over the Holy Week?

  • 10 feet tall and Bulletproof says:

    Common Idiot… redevelopment won’t effect my quality of life out here, either. But I like to think about my neighbors everywhere, and what is fairest to them, and what will effect their quality of life. I often think I am in a hopeless minority anymore.

  • Stephen G. Nichols and The Clue says:

    Ms. Valle, there is NO percentage in getting into a braying contest with a jackass.
    Mr. Stone, the only one I see here obviously emanating purely attack emotions is you, sir. You need to start showing some restraint. This is supposed to a civil discussion!

  • AFF says:

    Sorry LI,

    I live in the boonies of Western LC- 5 bars here.

    The reason we have 5 bars is because of a new cell tower- the tower took several years to get functional, mainly due to community concerns.

    We now have a tower (flagpole) most of us can live with just fine- the original proposal was much larger smack dab in the middle of some very historical sites. No need for knee jerk reactions because we “need” better cell service. Let’s take our time and do it right- some of us don’t like chicken shit in our food

    (BTW- a 150 ft cell “disguised” as a silo without a barn nearby couldn’t be uglier and more out of place if they tried)

  • G. Stone says:

    Stephen the clue:
    Eat your Wheaties or pound sand.

    Love G.

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