A417 Missing Link

The views expressed in this page do not represent those of the Planning Inspectorate. This page consists of content submitted to the Planning Inspectorate by the public and other interested parties, giving their views of this proposal.

A417 Missing Link

Received 02 September 2021
From Cellnex UK

Representation

Cellnex UK A417 Missing Link Planning Inspectorate Reference: TR010056 Summary of Objections to the Development Consent Order We take this opportunity to provide a summary of our objections to the Development Consent Order. We intend to expand upon these points within further representations to be submitted at the appropriate time during the examination process. We reserve our right to attend and participate in the relevant examination hearings. Background Cellnex Group is a significant pan-European tower operator with sites in the UK, Ireland, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Denmark, Austria, Poland, Italy, France, Switzerland and the Netherlands. It has 131,000 communication sites, 71,000 of them already in the portfolio and the rest in the process of closing or planned roll-outs up to 2030 and positions the company to develop new generation networks. Cellnex UK is the largest supplier of sites available for sharing by other operators, for example, the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), Airwave and other emergency/breakdown service network operators, the RNLI, the Coastguard and Maritime Services, Mountain Rescue and a range of central and local government departments and agencies. It operates around 9000 active shared wireless infrastructure sites (neutral host) utilised by all the MNOs for the deployment of existing and future generations of mobile connectivity and particularly 5G. Additionally, Cellnex UK has access to other tall buildings and structures not yet developed for electronic communications use. Objections Whilst we do not object to the aims of the Development Consent Order (DCO) the proposed works potentially impact on two of our sites. We expand on our objections as they relate to each mast site below: 1. Existing mast site at Shab Hill, Birdlip, Gloucester, GL4 8JX (NGR: 393952E 215377N) Cellnex UK operates a 67m high lattice mast and associated development from this site. Although our mast site is located outside of the DCO area, the DCO boundary is situated in close proximity to the south and east where major construction works are proposed. The potential impacts of the proposed works require further investigation but are likely to include the following: (i) Operational/Technical Impacts – Any development that includes an increase in land levels could impact on the signal propagation from antennas and line of sight linkage of transmission dishes located on the mast. Technical impacts will require assessment and any required mitigation measures agreed with Highways England (HE) so that services currently provided from the mast are not impacted by any development associated with the DCO. (ii) Access Arrangements – Existing access arrangements to the site may be impacted by the proposal (iii) Power and Fixed Line Provision – Given the proximity of the proposed works any provision of services to the site from the east are likely to be impacted. (iv) Drainage Provision – Watercourse ditches are proposed in proximity to our site. Assurance is required that these will not represent a flooding issue. (v) Construction - There is a possibility that, due to proximity, the construction works could impact the operation of the mast in terms of dust, vibration and the operation of cranes blocking signal propagation and line of sight. We will therefore require mitigation measures to be put in place to safeguard our operations from the site. 2. Existing mast site, Land at Stockwell Farm, Birdlip, Cheltenham, GL53 9PF (NGR: 185492E 054007N) Cellnex operates a 15m monopole mast and associated development from this site. Although our mast site is located outside of the DCO area, the DCO boundary is located in close proximity to the east and in particular to the west where major construction works are proposed. The potential impacts of the proposed works require further investigation but are likely to include the following: (i) Operational/Technical Impacts – the main highways works including a bridge are located a short distance to the west of our installation. Any impact on signal propagation and line of sight dish linkage will require further assessment and any impacts mitigatedby HE. (ii) Access Arrangements – The proposed high works will bisect our existing legal access to the site from Stockwell Farm to the west. A permanent replacement access to the site and a temporary access during construction works will be required. We note that a bridge is proposed over the main highway to provide replacement access from the farm to the agricultural fields to the east we will require a legal agreement to use this. Our site operates on a 365 days, 24hrs day basis, so during highway construction, appropriate measures must be made for service personnel to access our site at short notice so that the public communication services provided from the site remain unaffected. (iii) Power and Fixed Line Provision – Given the proximity of the proposed works any provision of services to the site from the west are likely to be impacted. (iv) Drainage Provision – Watercourse ditches are proposed in proximity to our site. Assurance is required that these will not represent a flooding issue. (v) Construction - There is a possibility that, due to proximity, the construction works could impact the operation of the mast in terms of dust, vibration and the operation of cranes blocking signal propagation and line of sight linkage. We will therefore require mitigation measures to be put in place to safeguard our operations from the site. Further details of impacts and required mitigation measures for both sites will be detailed in our representations to be submitted in due course and we therefore lodge holding objections for both sites in the interim until discussions are undertaken with HE with regard to impacts and mitigation. The public and sustainable development benefits of mobile connectivity are now well-understood and we are in an electronic communications revolution with businesses and society in general using and relying upon all forms of modern communications to an ever-increasing extent. The protection of the above sites and the wireless communication services provided from them is clearly in the public interest as the loss of or impact on these services has the potential to affect several thousand mobile communications users. Whilst setting out our objection within these representations, we would welcome the opportunity for early dialogue with HE to address the objections and to minimise issues through negotiation and agreement. We would therefore be pleased to have contact with HE in this regard. We look forward to receiving further details of the examination. If you do require any further information or clarification, please do not hesitate to contact our Matthew Waugh on [redacted]