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Massapequa Park trustees vote 3-0 to buy site for cell tower

Massapequa Park Village Hall is located at 151

Massapequa Park Village Hall is located at 151 Front St. in Massapequa Park. (July 21, 2012) (Credit: Brittany Wait)

Massapequa Park Village has acquired a strip of property along Sunrise Highway in what Mayor James Altadonna Jr. called a “proactive” move to corral cellphone companies onto one site where a tower could potentially be built.

“The only reason why we’re even entertaining this property is so we don’t have a proliferation of smaller towers,” he said at a public hearing Monday. “It’s not palatable, it’s practical.”

Village officials voted 3-0 — one trustee was absent and another recently deceased trustee is not yet replaced — to spend about $4,000 for a Nassau County-owned plot of about 5,400 square feet near a train station parking lot.

The vote came after several residents protested the potential tower would still be too close to their homes, and most raised concerns about emissions and aesthetics.

“It’s not fair to us,” resident Maria Darrow said. “It’s just unsightly.”

Bill Haddigan, who lives between the newly purchased property and an existing cell tower at Village Hall, said, “I’m going to be right in the center of these towers. I’m not very comfortable.”

Altadonna said he prefers that cellphone companies, including Verizon Wireless, stay at their current home atop the Massapequa Water District water tower, but that their future there is uncertain.

Water district commissioner Thomas Hand said the district is negotiating with Verizon about its lease on the site. Verizon attorney Alfred Amato said the company prefers the Sunrise Highway site, where it can achieve better coverage for its customers.

Above: Massapequa Park Village Hall

Monica Ng, 25, was the lone resident in favor of the vote.

“We live in a world of technology,” she said. “It’s important to reach 911. It’s important to reach your family.”

Above: Massapequa Park Village Hall

Tags: Massapequa Park , vote , cell , tower , site

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