Public Hearing: 5200 Doncaster Way, Cell Tower

about 13 hours ago
CLOSED: This item is on the June 16th City Council agenda.

The Planning Commission approved this variance request at the April 15, 2020 meeting. The decision was appealed to the City Council. The City Council public hearing date is June 2nd and the final decision meeting date is June 16th. 

Applicant Appeal Submittal

Additional Information from Applicant

If you have any questions regarding this project, please contact Assistant City Planner, Kris Aaker.

Crown Castle USA, the applicant, is requesting a 170.1 foot setback variance from a south east lot line of 5200 Doncaster Way/Highlands Park, for a monopole cellular telecommunications antenna tower and park light standard replacement to allow for an additional service provider co-location. The proposed project includes replacement of the existing park light standard/monopole antenna and the addition of an equipment structure. 

The existing light standard/antenna is approximately 59 feet tall and is located south east of the ice rink and northwest of the park building. The existing light standard/antenna will be replaced in the same location with a 75 foot tall monopole that will accommodate new ice rink lights, a relocation of the existing T-mobile array and the addition of a Verizon cellular service antenna. A new equipment structure will be located east of the park building with access provided by a bituminous walk. The utility structures conform to the ordinance requirements. 

The required setback for the new monopole is based on height, with a 75 foot tall structure requiring a 300 foot setback from property adjacent that is residential. The proposed setback is 129.01 feet from the lot line adjacent to residential requiring a 170.1 foot setback variance. The subject site is city park property zoned R-1, Single Dwelling Unit District. The proposed light standard and co-location pole replacement within Highlands Park are permitted uses within the R-1 zoning district.

Applicant Submittal

Aerial Map


All comments are reviewed by the governing body to gain insight into community perspective and values. This information in addition to other factors like legal requirements, infrastructure needs, long-term strategy, cost, etc help inform the decision. The feedback collected is not considered a "vote". 

Everyone has the right to share their opinions and comments on the related project. While individuals may have varying opinions, respect each person's experience and insight.

Comments are considered part of the public record. When making a comment:

  1. provide your full name
  2. let us know your relation to the project (i.e. physical address, neighborhood, visit the area often, etc)
  3. respect the views of other participants even if they don't agree with you
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  • cindya07 about 1 month ago
    I am writing to express my concerns regarding the variance granted by the Edina Planning Commission which would allow a new cell tower to be built at 5200 Doncaster Way in Highlands Park. I am opposed to this variance. My residence at 5201 Doncaster Way is adjacent to the park. The proposed variance is not for a few feet, it is for more than half of the setback required for such a structure. I have many concerns about the proposal. It was represented that there had been a two year study to determine the best location for a tower to improve cell service in this area. However, during the discussion at the June 2 council meeting, the Crown Castle representative was not familiar with where Highlands School is located and could not specifically answer some other questions posed about alternative locations for the tower. If the area was so thoroughly investigated, it seems information such as this should have been very familiar to the investigator or someone familiar with the investigation's findings. For example, what other sites were considered...could coverage be enhanced further from another location? If basic information such as this is unfamiliar to the company's representative, who appeared as a purported expert on the proposal, the completeness and accuracy of the investigation seems discredited.The Highlands Park area is a relatively "low" area elevation wise with mature growing trees surrounding it. This contributes to the need for a 75' tower to achieve viability. If the tower were placed on more elevated land or structure, it would not need to be this tall.The tower is "unsightly" and not cohesive with the natural setting of the park.Also, the current warming house does not have capacity to house the ground equipment needed for Verizon. Another structure needs to be built near the woods to hold this, further disrupting the park's environment.5G technology is relatively new. When reading about the subject one can find many credible scientific sources who feel there are potential health risks to humans as well as plants and animals. It is not uncommon for technologies and products to have unintended consequences that are not apparent initially. The corporations behind them promote their products/services without full knowledge of long term effects. There have been numerous examples of this in our lifetimes...tobacco being one that it is difficult to argue against. I question the completeness and accuracy of the 5/29/2020 MIN Daisy report from Verizon. The incorrect grammar on the Overview page makes me suspect of some of the content and completeness of the study. The coverage maps beg some questions as well. I know Verizon calls are often dropped or "garbled" when users drive east on Vernon from the Parkwood Knolls area. This coverage map does not seem to indicate that shortcoming.I presume there was careful thought, discussion and good reasoning for the establishment of the setback requirements for such structures when they were adopted by the city. I don't feel it is right to so easily discard this established requirement when there are so many valid concerns from residents.Respectfully,Cindy Anderson5201 Doncaster WayEdina
  • Beamer001 about 1 month ago
    My name is Jenny Beamish and I live at 5236 Lochloy Drive and close to the park. My family and I support the new cell tower but we do not have a strong feeling where the tower will be located. We have Verizon, our children depend on their Verizon Gizmo watch for safety and we do not have a landline. Very much hoping a new tower goes somewhere so that those who are not on AT&T can have good and reliable cell phone service in our neighborhood.
  • Admin Commented Emily Bodeker about 1 month ago
    I live at 5717 Ayrshire Blvd. I am responding to the notice of public hearing for Crown Castel putting in a cell tower on Highlands Park. That is close to our home. There is not enough information on the public hearing sheet to really make a determination whether or not this something we would support. It doesn’t say the size of the cell tower, it only says the amount of setback. Is there an existing structure there now or is this a new additive? Without further information, I would be 100 percent against providing cell coverage. Why are we allowing this? Is there tax dollar reduction as a result of using public property to put up a private company’s cell tower? Who is benefiting from this cell tower? There is plenty of cell coverage today in the neighborhood. Those are some of the questions that I have. To reiterate, I am against providing access to Crown Castle. Thank you. Submitted by staff for Todd Gustin.