Cell Tower Trial Opens Today

A suit seeking to block construction of a 450-foot cellular phone tower at the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness near Ely, MN opens today in Minneapolis.

Minnesota Public Radio has a comprehensive Associated Press story on the matter HERE.

The advocacy group Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness brought the suit claiming the tower would violate the Minnesota Environmental Rights Act. The group claims the flashing lights on the tower would be visible from several lakes and waterways in the wilderness area. It also claims the tower would endanger birds in flight. The Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness say two smaller towers would be a better means of expanding cellular coverage in the area.

AT&T Mobility, which is proposing the tower, counters that a single tall tower would do the best job of expanding service to people living east of Ely and for visitors to the BWCAW. AT&T Mobility began work on the tower last summer, but suspended construction while the suit was pending.

The proposed site of the tower is near Fall Lake, east of Ely, roughly a mile outside the BWCAW boundary. The tower would sit on a 150-foot-high ridge, putting the top of the tower roughly 600 feet over most of the surrounding landscape.

Get Quetico Superior Wilderness News straight to your inbox

Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap