News

‘Faux tree’ unpopular in Tall Timbers area

 

Tall Timbers is a 1980s subdivision nestled among towering evergreens, at the southwest corner of 240 Street and 56 Avenue.

Another coniferous tree would likely blend in unnoticed among the forested patches, but for many residents in and around Tall Timbers one particular tree will be an ugly eyesore.

That’s because it’s not real. And if Industry Canada ignores Township council and residents, B.C.’s first “monofir” cell phone tower will be erected in the Tall Timbers community.

A “monofir” has been proposed for 5766- 240 St. At 148 feet, it would feature a bark-like trunk, and fibreglass branches to conceal its antennae.

“They do look good when they are done right,” Cascadia president Morrie Finn told a public hearing on Monday.

He said that the faux trees are extensively used in the U.S., while Ontario has 10. The one his company proposes to erect in Tall Timbers is for Wind Mobile “and would be visible from very few homes.”

The artificial tree towers “are community friendly,” he said.

Most residents disagreed.

“It’s unsuitable to have a fake evergreen among the beautiful forested area that we have,” said 58 Avenue resident Angela Gedye.

Local residents had support from those who live miles away.

“This area is very beautiful, scenic and habitat rich,” said Northwest Langley resident Petrina Arnason.

“A cell phone tower here would not be suitable.”

Tall Timbers resident Lynn Frisby told council that Rogers, Bell and Telus are not interested in the Cascades tower. Township policy encourages multi-use towers. Her neighbourhood, she said, “has been here for 32 years. We live in a stable neighbourhood (and) we do not want this tower.”

Brian McFadden said that the faux tree would be a mere 13 metres from his house. “It’s outrageous,” he said, charging that the owner on whose property the tree is proposed stands to gain “a very lucrative financial package.”

Council sided with the residents, agreeing to send the minutes of the hearing to Industry Canada with an accompanying letter expressing objection to the proposal.

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