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Cell tower may be installed at Franich Park

Posted: Friday, Nov 1st, 2013




WATSONVILLE — The Watsonville Planning Commission will consider Tuesday allowing AT&T to build a cell tower in Franich Park.

According to a report by Marcela Tavantzis, community development director, and Suzi Merriam, senior planner, the 90-foot tower, designed to look like a fake pine tree, would be constructed between the park’s baseball fields.

Franich Park, located off of East Lake Avenue, between the Vista Montana residential development and Ann Soldo School, is about 14 acres and includes baseball fields, soccer fields, a playground, basketball and volleyball courts and a dog park.

Under the Watsonville Municipal Code, a telecommunications site must have a setback equal to twice the structure’s height between any residential unit or school. The proposed tower, according to the report, will be about 391 feet from the nearest adjacent residence and 243 feet away from a school.

EBI Consulting, which prepared a radio frequency analysis for the proposal, found that the exposure level at the nearest walking surface will be 2.5 percent of the maximum exposure limit for the general public, the report stated.

According to AT&T, the tower would improve coverage to the East Lake Avenue area, from Beck Street to Bridge Street, and along Tuttle Avenue from Rogers Street to Delta Way.

The Planning Commission will also consider allowing El Miramar Sports Bar to operate with a beer and wine license again, more than six months after it was revoked by the City Council for reported violations.

On Feb. 5, the Planning Commission voted to revoke El Miramar’s alcohol license after police reportedly found it operating as a night club without a permit and discovered minors drinking in the bar. The City Council upheld the decision at its April 9 meeting.

According to Tavantzis’ and Merriam’s report, no police-related incidents have occurred at the business since the decision.

The Commission may decide to limit El Miramar’s entertainment options and operating hours, closing at 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 11 p.m. Friday through Saturday.

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The Watsonville Planning Commission will meet Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the Watsonville City Council Chambers, 275 Main St., fourth floor. The agenda can be found at tinyurl.com/krs4966.

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