Thumbs up to phone towers

MOST owners of apartments at the Riviera Resort support the installation of mobile phone towers on the rooftop.

Body corporate chairman Tor Bowen said several owners had reservations after they were approached to install nine antenna panels and a dish on the six-storey building at Torquay.

But, he said, after a lengthy time collecting research and “detailed health reports”, the majority of the 50 owners voted in favour of the proposal, which would see Optus and Telstra paying rental fees for the site.

“We were very much in two minds about it,” Mr Bowen said.

But after two votes, the body corporate had agreed on a 10-year lease for the towers, which Optus and Telstra say will help improve mobile coverage in Hervey Bay.

The plan has angered neighbours of the resort, including representatives from Delfino's on the Bay and Beachcomber holiday units, who say they worry about the potential health risks involved.

They have encouraged other residents to voice their opposition by making a submission while the project is still in consultation.

“There is a great deal of NIMBY-ism here, which stands for Not In My Back Yard,” Mr Bowen said. “I guarantee everyone who has made a complaint has a mobile phone and gets angry when they can't get reception.

“The reality is everyone uses mobile phones.”

Besides the revenue was the fact that under federal legislation Optus and Telstra could have put the towers there without body corporate approval, Mr Bowen said.

In that instance the resort may not have been paid rental for the site, he said.



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