Menifee Planning Commission approves Bundy Road collocation for Metro PCS

The Menifee Planning Commission approved a Metro PCS collocation on an existing site Tuesday evening after a 3 to 2 majority vote.

A collocation will be located at 25770 Bundy Canyon Road in Menifee, where several antennas will be placed on an existing cell tower.

This project will include the addition of eight antennas on six panels, one parabolic antenna, and one GPS antenna on an undisguised tower.

Before the meeting, American Tower Attorney Bonnie Belair commented that this was her third time here representing Metro PCS, a mobile phone service provider.

“We just want a simple collocation on an existing site,” she said.

A simple request turned into an elaborate discussion about the possibility of an alternative site, tower concealment, and public safety issues.

The commission had various concerns. The existing site is located within a residential area, not a commercial area. There are plans for Bundy road to be widened, which could become a problem for the site location in the future. Also, the tower can’t be concealed or disguised because of the way it was engineered.

“It’s already ugly, but it would be way uglier if another pole was erected somewhere else, which is what Metro PCS would do if we don’t approve this,” said commissioner Bill Zimmerman. “We should take advantage of this existing tower.”

Commissioners Matt Liesemeyer and Chris Thomas, who both voted in favor of Metro PCS along with Zimmerman, agreed that collocation would be the best decision to make in this situation. Commissioners Marc Miller and Mark Matelko voted against the collocation.

Metro PCS applicants agreed to provisions requested by the commission in order to make the tower less of an eyesore. The new antennas will be “mounted flush against the existing tower and painted to match,” a concrete wall and wrought iron gate will replace the existing chain link fence around the base of the tower, and palm trees and bushes will be planted.

Metro PCS wants to collocate at this site because it’s their “least intrusive option.”

The Metro PCS antennas located outside of the city don’t have enough power to cover Murrieta and Scott Road, where their customers experience dropped calls while commuting. Adding antennas to the Bundy Road site will bring more coverage to those customers who “live, work, and visit in Menifee.”




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