A UK company has applied for planning permission to replace an existing 15-metre phone mast with a new 25-metre one in Cumbernauld, North Lanarkshire. The company says the new mast is necessary to improve connectivity and support the sharing of sites by different operators.
Why is the new mast needed?
The company behind the application is Icon Tower Infrastructure Group, a subsidiary of Radius Global Infrastructure, an international company that leases sites for electronic communications in 21 countries. Icon Tower says that the existing mast near Tannoch Drive, Lenziemill, cannot support the equipment that is now required to provide better coverage and capacity for mobile network operators. The new mast would have six antennae, two dishes, five operator cabinets and a meter cabinet.
What are the benefits of the new mast?
Icon Tower claims that the new mast would bring two public benefits: driving investment and market competition, and promoting the sharing of sites by different operators. The company says that by developing sites for other companies to install their equipment, it would reduce the need for more masts in the area and mitigate the visual impact of telecomms infrastructure. Icon Tower was granted Electronic Communications Code recognition from OFCOM in January 2022, which allows it to access land and install equipment for electronic communications.
How will the new mast affect the local community?
The company says that it has consulted with the local community and taken into account their views and concerns. It says that it has chosen a suitable location for the new mast that would minimise its visibility and environmental impact. It also says that it has followed the relevant guidelines and standards for health and safety, and that the new mast would not pose any risk to the public or wildlife. The company says that the new mast would enhance the quality of life and economic opportunities for the local residents and businesses by providing better connectivity and services.
What are the next steps for the application?
The planning application for the new mast has been submitted to North Lanarkshire Council under the reference number 23/01065/PAMAST. The council will review the application and decide whether to approve or reject it. The council will also consider any objections or comments from the public or other stakeholders. The council has not yet announced a date for its decision.
Will the new mast be approved or rejected?
The outcome of the planning application is uncertain, as there may be different opinions and interests involved. Some people may welcome the new mast as a way to improve connectivity and support innovation, while others may oppose it as a way to preserve the landscape and protect health. The council will have to weigh the pros and cons of the new mast and make a balanced decision based on planning policies and regulations.