GC council discusses cell tower

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At the Aug. 6 Grove City council meeting, council passed a resolution to approve the development plan for a T-Mobile communication tower after some persuasion from Jackson Township officials.

The 160-foot tower would be located at 2650 London-Groveport Rd. behind the Jackson Township fire station.

Dave Burris, Jackson Township chairman, said T-Mobile has offered to sign a 30-year contract that would bring the township half a million dollars in that time.  

"We have tried to stay off the ballot and we’re always looking for creative ways to generate money," said Burris. "We want to keep that money here.

The township trustees were under the impression that the city was going to turn down the development plan and relocate the tower to city property so they would receive the money. The township would receive about $1,000 a month for the tower and it would improve communication at the fire station.

City officials say they are not after the money, they would just like to see the tower in a different location.

"The city has invested $12 million in improvements along State Route 665," said Councilman Richard "Ike" Stage. "It doesn’t make sense to put all that money into the road then stick a large antenna there."

Stage said if the monthly check was what the township was worried about, the city could pay them $1,000 and move the location of the tower.

A representative from T-Mobile explained that when 665 is complete it will allow for increased traffic, which means more people on cell phones.

The Grove City Planning Commission previously denied the development plan and the special use permit for the project but Commission President Marvin Holt told council that one part of that was a mistake. The plans go through the planning commission before it goes to council.

"I’m of the opinion the development plan was wrongfully denied," Holt commented in an e-mail to city officials. "The development plan met all the appropriate codes with a few minor landscape stipulations. It was our zest and my oversight to deny the plan."

Holt went on to encourage council to approve the development plan. He noted that he is still against the special use permit but would recommend approval if the tower was placed in a "more appropriate location."

The approval of the development plan states that the company has met the zoning code and its standards. If the special use permit is not granted, the development plan is a moot point. Council is scheduled to vote on the special use permit on Aug. 20.

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