Residents to fight NBN tower

REDBANK residents are reeling over the shock proposal for a 40 metre high tower set to overshadow their backyards.

A devastated group of locals last night met with representatives from NBN Co, town planners Aurecon and infrastructure project managers Ericsson, to raise their concerns.

For some, the installation of the tower in its proposed location at 320 Redbank Road, Wauchope will have life-changing consequences.

Some 30 members of the community have formed a united front to fight the proposed site.

They say the tower will become a visual scar on the picturesque surrounds and ruin the allure of the semi-rural suburb.

If the monopole proceeds in the proposed location it would be situated in a large land clearing, within some 400m of at least five homes on Matthew Mitchell Drive and would be easily visible from the windows and yards of certain properties.

“If the tower proceeds we will move,” said Narelle Thompson, who lives on a large battle-axe block on 338 Redbank Road.

Long-time locals of 16 years Catherine and Scott Grove are also considering the same heartbreaking decision.

“If this tower goes ahead and we are praying it will not and that common sense will prevail, we will consider moving,” they said.

Residents have used a submission to express their concerns and to suggest a number of other sites where trees could conceal the monopole and where it would be further away from homes.

Federal Member for Lyne Rob Oakeshott reminded residents the construction of the NBN facility was not yet a done deal, and all concerns would be heard.

“No site is set in stone. Residents with positive suggestions on this are very welcome to have input, and they will be listened to,” Mr Oakeshott said. “Of course, if the majority of residents don’t want high-speed broadband, then this too can be easily fixed.

“I’m more than happy to ask NBN Co to cancel the rollout of the NBN at Redbank if most people say they don’t want it.”

NBN communications manager Rhonda Griffin said council feedback was sought regarding the the issues of concern to the community.

“We understand that views on the rollout of new infrastructure will likely reflect a range of community opinions as people balance the desire for access to new technology with other lifestyle and local amenity considerations,”she said.

“Subject to planning approval, the new network aims to provide access to services that will enhance the lives of people in rural and regional areas, improving the ability to communicate with family and friends, access educational information, health and other services.”

Concerned residents have 15 days to try persuade the company to change the location of the radio network base station.

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