Wednesday, November 14, 2018
5G Rollout Causes “Chaos” in Baton Rouge
AT&T is installing 80 new small cell 5G poles on the streets of Baton Rouge, and it “has created a lot of chaos downtown,” according to City-Parish Chief Administrative Officer Darryl Gissel. In mid-October, an AT&T subcontractor struck an underground power line during one installation creating a massive power outage in the city.
Adding to the deployment woes, local residents expressed shock and opposition to the 29-foot black metal poles upon unexpectedly seeing their installation. Executive director Davis Rhorer said several property owners have contacted the Downtown Development District to dispute the locations of the towers, and how close they will be to their businesses and homes. Metro Council passed an ordinance establishing the regulations for small cell installation in 2017, allowing the poles to be built in the public right-of-way, according to Business Report.
According to Business Report, Darryl Gissel said local law does not allow officials to turn down a tower site proposal based on aesthetic reasons, and there must be a “compelling reason” such as it being a safety risk or a historical site. Continue Reading