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[TowerTalk] Chicago Tribune: Antenna Stirs Static Among Neighbors

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Chicago Tribune: Antenna Stirs Static Among Neighbors
From: (Jerry Muller)
Date: Mon Aug 11 21:17:47 2003
This guy got off easy. I live in "Live Free or Die" New Hampshire and had to
spend over $25K in legal fees to protect three towers on six acres that are
almost invisible. (New Hampshire Supreme Court, Marchand v. Hudson)

Jerry, K0TV

----- Original Message -----
From: "Rob Atkinson, K5UJ" <>
To: <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Monday, August 11, 2003 8:43 PM
Subject: [TowerTalk] Chicago Tribune: Antenna Stirs Static Among Neighbors

> P. 1 of the Metro section of today's Chicago Tribune:
> Antenna Stirs Static Among Neighbors
> by John Keilman 8/11/2003
> Excerpts (summaries in [ ]):
> Carmen Ambroggio's lifelong passion for ham radio is all too obvious to
> people in his Park Ridge neighborhood.  They just have to look up.
> There, above his rooftop, is the steel antenna tower the 78 year old
> businessman is building in his back yard so he can talk to people on the
> other side of the globe....
> But he has few sympathizers among his neighbors.  They call the $9,000
> retractable tower, designed to reach a maximum height of 64 feet, an
> that is out of place in a community where even telephone wires are buried.
> "It's not appropriate for someone to move in and put something like this
> a residential neighborhood," said Robert Wallace, who lives a few houses
> away.  "It may be legal, but it shouldn't be legal."
> ..oppposition has led city officials to crack down on Ambroggio for
> his tower a few feet farther into his yard than it should be, marking
> another skirmish in the long-standing battle between the nation's 685,000
> ham radio operators and the people living near them.
> [Paragraph describing ham radio public service leading to PRB-1]
> On the other side, many neighbors of radio operators have no desire to
> at the towers, which can reach heights of 75 feet or more...[cause]
> interference nearby...concerns prompted some municipalities and home
> assns. to get tough on the towers.
> Park Ridge zoning laws allow antenna towers up to 75 feet...When some
> neighbors learned about his plan for a tower, they complained that it
> be out of place on their street of ranch and split-level houses.  After
> several months of deliberation, the city gave Ambroggio a building permit.
> Thomas Wong, chairman of the Elec. and Computer Eng. dept. at Ill. Inst.
> Tech. said interference could be due to improperly installed antennas or
> transmitters that send out too much power.  Home electronics also could be
> to blame if they are not properly shielded from outside radio waves, he
> said.
> [Neighbor Kevin] Goll was no fan of the tower to begin with, but as he
> watched construction proceed he grew more irritated as he realized that
> tower was not being placed where it was supposed to go.
> [Account of how Ambroggio found an uncharted drain pipe during tower base
> excavation]  Without getting clearance from the city, he moved the tower's
> base a few feet farther into his yard.  That made the antenna even more
> visible, Goll said.  "By being moved so far out, there's nowhere we can be
> on our back patio and not see this thing," he said.  "This structure is
> small."
> He and other neighbors appealed to the city [Ambroggio reportedly has to
> move his tower at a cost of $3,000].  To Ambroggio and his atty., Sheldon
> Epstein [also a ham], the complaints are tantamount to harassment..."It
> doesn't matter if [neighbors] have an aesthetic objection or not," said
> Epstein, ..."The community has passed an ordinance that permits it.  End
> argument."
> Two photos:  1.  Photo of Mr. Goll looking unhappy with retracted tower in
> background.  Caption:  Kevin Goll and other Park Ridge residents have
> complained about the ham radio tower in the yard of Carmen Ambroggio.
> says he now hears static and voices from his TV and stereo.
> 2.  Photo of Mr. Ambroggio in basement shack.  Caption:  Carmen Ambroggio
> says his 64-foot tower is legal and necessary to operate the ham radio
> equipment in his basement.
> Rob Atkinson
> K5UJ
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