Another Terminal 5 note: 80-foot radio tower (re-)planned

July 24, 2014 at 2:42 pm | In West Seattle news | 14 Comments

As reported here yesterday, the Port of Seattle‘s Terminal 5 in West Seattle is going mostly idle, with a modernization project being planned. But our regular daily search of city permit applications turned up a project proposed for part of the site, potentially of interest to northeast-facing West Seattle: Burlington-Northern-Santa Fe is reopening the permit process for a proposed 80-foot-high radio-transmitting tower between two of its tracks at Terminal 5, close to the corner of Harbor and Spokane. A construction permit for the “tripod-style” low-power tower was originally issued in 2006 (the map above is from a related notice), but it wasn’t built; when a permit extension was sought in 2009, the document included a notation that the railroad company and port were having “property and indemnity discussions.” That extension was granted but expired in 2011; the railroad has just applied for a new construction permit – here’s the city-website page.

The original site plan notes, “Antennas mounted to this freestanding antenna tower will be mounted with as little projection from the tower structure as is feasible. External conduits, climbing structures, fittings, and other projections from the external face of the support structure will be minimized to the extent possible.”

14 Comments

  1. “to the extent possible” actually means “they will do whatever they want without giving a rip about what you need.”
    They don’t need to put the tower at that location.

    Comment by Jim — 8:29 pm July 24, 2014 #

  2. oh hell no… as someone who’s property view will be directly affected by this new tower…nope no way, u can bet I will be throwing a fit over this, til the bitter end. my guess is that anyone, who lives on harbor ave should feel the same way. We are west seattle too, ya know?

    Comment by mike — 10:44 pm July 24, 2014 #

  3. The address for this proposal is listed as being built on Spokane street, when in reality its on Harbor Ave. Only its on the otherside of the fence.

    Comment by mike — 10:58 pm July 24, 2014 #

  4. I believe that’s because the official address for T-5 is 2850 SW Spokane. But whatever the case, it’s the official address on file with the city. I included the map after pulling up and reading a dozen or so documents, exactly so anyone who cared could see a more-precise location.

    Comment by WSB — 11:11 pm July 24, 2014 #

  5. Thank you for doing the Due Diligence on behalf of everyone. Your work and information is much appreciated.

    Comment by Mike — 11:34 pm July 24, 2014 #

  6. People still complain about communication towers? That device in your back pocket doesn’t work its magic without towers, you know?

    You are correct about the City requiring the equipment to be mounted as close to the structure as possible. New Federal laws suggest that condition can not be imposed.

    http://www.fcc.gov/document/local-review-collocation-applications-interpretive-guidance

    Comment by Gawdger — 9:21 am July 25, 2014 #

  7. Gawdger – what you’re saying is that they can build that tower wherever they damn well please and there is nothing we can do about it. Typical.
    But, your reference does start out with “existing tower.”

    Comment by Jim — 10:47 am July 25, 2014 #

  8. Indeed comminication towers are necessary for mobile device connectivity. However, mine is working just fine and there is no reason to build the tower there. Better suited on top of a hill, certainly not at the base of one. Not to mention its an eyesore for homeowners who live on Harbor Ave.

    Comment by Mike — 3:02 pm July 25, 2014 #

  9. what is the matter with the towers on pill-hill? have they run out of room for more antennas?radio wave propagation depends on clear line-of -sight to work well; you don’t put it in a hole..

    Comment by Robert — 7:49 am July 26, 2014 #

  10. So a private corporation is going to spend a half million bucks or so for a tower they don’t need, just to irritate west Seattle residents?

    What an odd little world some people live in, where they are experts on everything…..

    Comment by Josh — 8:59 am July 26, 2014 #

  11. I’m sure BNSF could find a suitable location elsewhere. They most certainly have more than enough resources to do so.

    Comment by Mike — 4:15 pm July 26, 2014 #

  12. @ Jim – I just find it ridiculous that people complain about wireless structures, yet most are attached at the hip with their devices and are quite vocal when they don’t have voice or data service. I don’t see citizens up in arms about the numerous, unsightly utility poles that provide electricity to their homes, but I do hope this horrendous comm structure doesn’t impart anyone’s lovely view of the concrete plant across the river.

    Comment by Gawdger — 11:35 pm July 26, 2014 #

  13. Josh – The issue is whether they even explored other options that would have less impact on the community. It’s doubtful they even put that into the mix.

    Comment by Jim — 7:54 am July 27, 2014 #

  14. Gawdger – You find it ridiculous because it’s not your view that is being spoiled this time. That’s how the Port and BNSF get away with these things. They impact small groups one at a time that have no political power. If everyone would support the concept, we could fix some of the problems you mention.

    Comment by Jim — 8:00 am July 27, 2014 #

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