Just when you thought your home was your haven, the Scarborough Town Council is getting ready to plop a big ol’ cell phone tower in your backyard. It’s just what everyone wants: a 150-foot megalith for the kids to climb and you to gaze out at adoringly every day, never mind there might be health risks.
OK, so your kids may not be able to climb these towers, but there is a very real threat to property values. And the link to cancer clusters around them has caused bans in other parts of the U.S.
Right now cell towers are only allowed in industrial zones; next stop, neighborhoods (or right on the edge of your neighborhood). There are 11 recommended new tower locations all around town, in or near neighborhoods and homes. They could spring up just about anywhere that could support a 150-foot buffer, even in your neighbor’s yard.
Maine’s housing market continues to be variable, and people work hard to afford to buy a home in Scarborough. They should not have additional worries about an industrial use in their neighborhood negatively affecting their property values.
This is a double-edged sword: better cell phone reception means more towers. I hope the council will reconsider this proposal and work to site new towers away from our homes and neighborhoods. Scarborough homeowners shouldn’t be subjected to falling property values and a potential health risk as a result.
Karen A. D’Andrea