LAURA HALM-6 News Reporter
CITY (WATE) - Some homeowners are concerned about a proposed cell
tower going up next to their neighborhood on Virtue Road in Lenoir
City. That is right on the line between Knox and Loudon counties.
"There is no room for a cell tower where we live," said homeowner
Kristi Ayres Brackfield.
Verizon is proposing a 180 foot cell tower, roughly 18 stories high,
off Virtue Road. Brackfield wanted to see what her 27 acre backyard
would look like and to get a better idea, she created before and
"They look like they're mini trees, rather look like shrubs next to
the 18 story cell tower," said Brackfield.
Based on data trends, Verizon says the tower is something the county
needs. Engineers recently determined the new tower would improve
data usage in the area.
"I just feel devastated because I feel like they're destroying a
legacy that we're leaving for all our families. Not just mine, but
the thousands around here because they're going to have that cell
tower forever," added Brackfield.
We checked with Loudon County Building and Zoning and learned that
area is zoned as suburban residential.
"It is not a permitted use. That's why they're having to go before
the Loudon County Board of Zoning appeals to get a special exception
to put this on that property," said Nancy Henson with the Loudon
County Planning and Codes Office.
Before any final decision is made, the county planner needs to
review all the requirements before the meting in August.
"I'm not against the progress of having cell towers and coverage,
but we do have cell coverage," said homeowner Sharon Yarbrough.
Since she lives next to the vacant lot where it could be built, she
"I've asked why and why now," added Yarbrough.
Worried about property values and health risks, these neighbors say
they're trying to take things into their own hands.
"Let's not let this cell tower come in our neighborhood. There are
many alternative locations," said Brackfield.
Verizon tells us they'll go before the Zoning Board on August 12.
Homeowners also say they plan on being at that meeting.