‘No’ to cell phone tower construction in Preston, Park Rynie.

South Coast Herald https://southcoastherald.co.za/273776/no-cell-phone-tower-construction-preston-park-rynie/

The response is a unanimous objection to this application for several reasons, including the negative impact on health and the aesthetics of the town.

Preston residents have objected to the a telecommunications mast and base station being constructed in the area.

An application was made to Umdoni Municipality for special consent in terms of the Spatial Planning Land Use Management Act (SPLUMA Act No. 16 of 2013).

The mast and base station are to be constructed at 21 Preston Road, Park Rynie where the Old Apostolic church is.

The time to comment on the proposal is now over, but ward councillor, Eddie Baptie, managed to put together a public meeting last Wednesday, just before the cut-off time, at which he objected to this application and so did several other residents.

Councillor Baptie’s reasons for objection:

1. In terms of the SPLUMA bylaws it is a requirement for the ward councillor to be given notice of proposed town planning amendments, for comment. Such notice was not served. Unless it can be shown otherwise, this avoidance is considered to be a deliberate attempt to curtail the rights of citizens and their legal representative.

2. I have studied the application and see no reason or motivation to exceed building lines. This request therefore appears to be arbitrary and intended to defeat the purpose of building lines in the Land Use Management Scheme (LUMS).

3. Erf 577 Park Rynie is zoned ‘Residential Only 3’ and the application use, a telecommunications mast and base station, is not permitted under special consent in this zone. This application should therefore be dismissed on grounds that it cannot conform to the provisions of the LUMS and would constitute an illegal structure if erected. Should the applicant aver that this use is permitted then the applicant must show this to be the case in terms of the definitions and other provisions in the LUMS. It is my specific request that the senior planner provide an explanation how this proposed structure could be interpreted as one of the special consent uses.

4. I have had extensive engagements with residents of Park Rynie and arranged a public meeting (last week) to provide opportunity for their expression, and to provide information on the process. The response is a unanimous objection to this application for numerous reasons, including the negative impact on health and the negative impact on the amenity and aesthetics of the town. As the elected representative of these residents I must add their objections to those as stated above.

Umdoni Municipality was asked to comment, but had not provided any feedback at the time of writing.

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