Spencer Zoning Board of Adjustments approves cell tower
By Steve Huffman
SPENCER ó Members of Spencer’s Zoning Board of Adjustments last week unanimously approved a request for construction of a cell tower outside town.
The tower will provide phone service to motorists traveling nearby Interstate 85, residents of Spencer and visitors to High Rock Raceway, providing the proposed racetrack eventually sees the light of day.
In addition to providing a conditional use permit for the property, zoning board members also approved a variance, allowing the tower to be constructed to a height of 195 feet. Typically, town ordinances limit cell towers to 100 feet.
The site of the tower is off Hackett Road, on land that belongs to Dave Risdon, the track’s developer.
Dustin Wilson, Spencer’s land use manager, said most of the discussion that preceded last week’s vote concerned the need for the cell tower for drivers and spectators who will eventually attend races at High Rock Raceway.
“Dave Risdon was touting the need to serve the track,” Wilson said.
Risdon said the tower would provide excellent cell phone service and wireless Internet access to the track.
Bonnie Newell, a spokeswoman for the Berkley Group LLC, the company building the tower, said plans are for construction to be completed by the end of summer.
She said the proposal presented to the zoning board was “fairly typical.”
“We don’t go in thinking this is something that’s going to disrupt the landscape,” Newell said. “It really blends in very nicely.”
Approval by the zoning board is final, meaning the matter does not have to go before the Spencer Board of Aldermen.
A handful of conditions were applied to the cell tower’s approval. According to those conditions, representative of the Berkley Group must:
– Secure a bond before the tower is erected.
– Sign a removal agreement assuring the tower will come down should its use ever no longer be required.
– Construct a 10-foot-high fence with razor wire around the facility and have a technician inspect the tower monthly.