Editor, The News:
I’ve just come from what was supposed to be a neighbourhood ‘consultation meeting’ with representatives of Telus.
Telus is required to ‘consult’ with the public about the wireless towers it proposes to install on Laity Street.
In the meantime, the company has already installed the poles that will accommodate the equipment. One of them is right beside my house, dominating the view from my kitchen window.
But there was no consultation, no opportunity for me and my neighbours to share our considerable concerns.
Instead, the forum was ‘open house’ style, with no structured meeting at all, only poster boards duplicating the information we already had.
Telus representatives were unable to answer our most basic questions. We were asked to write comment slips and drop them into a box.
The Telus representatives insisted that the community would have an opportunity to voice concerns in a meeting format when the matter comes before Maple Ridge council, but no one knew when that might be.
We do not even have much information about the actual final appearance of the towers. I asked for another example of such an installation in a residential neighbourhood in Maple Ridge. I don’t believe one exists, and that such towers are typically atop high rise buildings.
While the reps seemed to imply that these towers were prevalent, no one could cite a single specific example. Instead, we were shown photo simulations depicting the poles and equipment from a distance, not to scale.
Some of the reps seemed unsure about whether or not the equipment had actually been installed. It has not; I had to show the rep my own photograph.
These wireless towers do not belong on poles on residential streets. Concerns abound about the effects on human health. I don’t know if they’re safe and, frankly, neither does Telus.
No evidence of risk is not quite the same thing.
But even the perception of risk damages the value of our homes, and the presence of this ugly equipment spoils the appearance of our residential neighbourhood.
Find another location, Telus.