307 sign online petition against cell tower in Pelham Manor; Mayor Lapey opposes pole for ‘negative impact’ on property values

Photo location plan included in the DOT letter that indicates location of telecommunications tower at exit 7 on the Hutchinson River Parkway.

Photo location plan included in the DOT letter that indicates location of telecommunications tower at exit 7 on the Hutchinson River Parkway.

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Editor’s note: Updates to include new Aug. 27 deadline for comments.

An online petition has collected 307 signatures calling on state officials to block the New York State Department of Transportation from building a cell tower at Exit 7 on the Hutchinson River Parkway in Pelham Manor.

The petition is addressed to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, State Sen. Alessandra Biaggi and Assemblywoman Amy Paulin.

Pelham Manor Mayor Jennifer Monachino Lapey Thursday sent a letter to the attorney for the DOT contractor expressing the village’s opposition to the so-called monopole.

“The negative impact on property values and the deleterious effect on the historic character of our village and natural surroundings would be untenable to our residents,” wrote Lapey to Jacqueline Phillips Murray, attorney for contractor Crown Communications. “As a result, my colleagues on the board and I all object to this monopole proposal and urge Crown and the NYSDOT to find a more suitable location outside of our largely residential, historic village.”

Murray had originally said she’d accept comments from residents on the project until Friday. However, Lapey said Friday in an email the village received word from Murray that an Aug. 27 deadline for comments was acceptable to her. That is the day after the village board meets.

Officials from the DOT and Crown appeared at a village board meeting last month to discuss the telecommunications pole. The village does not have a say in the construction of the tower, as it’s on state land. The DOT has already moved the location of the proposed tower once, south from exit 9, after Pelham town, village and school officials protested its proximity to the Pelham high school/middle school complex.