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A. Purpose: The purpose of this section is to establish general guidelines for the siting of towers and antennas. The goal of this section is to: 1) encourage the location of towers in nonresidential areas and to minimize the total number of towers throughout the Village; 2) encourage the joint use of new and existing tower sites; 3) encourage users of towers and antennas to locate them, to the extent possible, in areas where the adverse impact on the Village is minimal; 4) encourage users of towers and antennas to configure them in a way that minimizes the adverse visual impact of the towers and antennas; and 5) enhance the ability of providers of personal wireless services to provide such services throughout the Village quickly, effectively and efficiently. Accordingly, the Corporate Authorities find that the promulgation of this section is warranted and necessary.
All towers and antennas existing on the date of the passage of ordinance 98-14 shall be allowed to continue their usage as they presently exist. Routine maintenance shall be permitted on such existing towers and antennas. New construction other than routine maintenance on existing towers shall comply with the provisions as set forth in this section. (Ord. 98-14, 2-2-1998)
This section shall not apply to small wireless facilities (as defined in section 7-1E-2 of the Village Code) except that requests for height exceptions or variances for small wireless facilities shall be subject to the special use procedure and conditions set forth in subsections B2 and B3 of this section. (Ord. 2018-34, 7-24-2018)
B. General Requirements:
1. Location: Wireless telecommunication facilities, and wireless service towers are permitted in the event a special use is granted in the M-1 and M-2 Zoning Districts. In addition, wireless telecommunication facilities, and wireless service towers are permitted on land and structures owned by the Village if a special use is granted for this purpose.
2. Procedure: The procedure for applying for a special use pursuant to this section is the same procedure established and described in section 9-1-6-10 of this ordinance.
3. Special Use Conditions: In accordance with section 9-1-6-10 of this ordinance, the Zoning Board shall require, but not be limited to, satisfaction of the following conditions before recommending the grant of a special use pursuant to this section:
a. The personal wireless service provider proposing to construct an antenna support structure, tower, or mount an antenna on an existing structure, is required to demonstrate, using technological evidence, that the antenna must be placed in the approximate location which is proposed in order to satisfy its function in the provider's grid system.
b. The provider must demonstrate by technological evidence that the height requested is the minimum height with a necessary allowance for the potential collocation by other telecommunications providers as hereinafter described, necessary to fulfill the cell site's function within the grid system.
c. The provider must demonstrate that the wireless service facilities will not have an adverse effect on adjacent residential property values.
d. The provider must demonstrate that the wireless service facilities will not have an adverse visual impact and will not adversely affect the surrounding neighborhood.
e. The applicant for a new antenna support structure to be located in the M-1 and M-2 Zoning Districts shall demonstrate that a diligent effort has been made to locate the proposed communications facilities on a governmental structure or other governmental property and that due to valid consideration including physical constraints, and economic or technological feasibility, no other appropriate location is available.
f. The provider is required to demonstrate that it contacted the owners of tall structures within a one mile radius of the site proposed, asked for permission to install the antenna on those structures, and was denied for reasons other than economic ones.
g. The information submitted by the applicant shall include a map of the area to be served by the tower, its relationship to other antenna sites in the applicant's network, and an evaluation of the suitability of existing buildings taller than forty five feet (45'), communication towers and water towers within one mile of the proposed tower.
C. Minimum Requirements When Placement Of Wireless Services Facilities Is On Village-Owned Structures Or Property:
1. The applicant shall negotiate and obtain a lease or other agreement with the Village regarding such placement and shall comply with the terms therein;
2. The antenna or tower will not interfere with the purpose for which the Village-owned property is intended;
3. The antenna or tower will have minimal visual or economic impact on surrounding property;
4. The applicant is willing and is able to obtain adequate liability insurance and commit to a lease agreement which includes equitable compensation for the use of public land or structures and other necessary provisions and safeguards. The compensation for the lease shall be established by the corporate authorities after considering comparable rates in other communities, potential expenses, and other appropriate factors;
5. The applicant will submit an irrevocable letter of credit acceptable to the Village to cover the cost of the antenna or tower's removal upon termination of the lease;
6. The applicant must reimburse the Village for any costs which the Village incurs by reason of the lease and the presence of the applicant's antenna or tower; and
7. The applicant must obtain other land use approvals if required.
D. Special Prohibition: In no case shall antennas be allowed in parks or areas designated as conservation areas.
E. Reservation Of Right: Notwithstanding the above, the Board of Trustees reserves the right to deny the use of any or all Village-owned property by anyone or all applicants.
F. Co-Location On Towers: To minimize adverse visual impacts associated with the proliferation of towers, co-location of antennas by more than one provider on existing or new towers shall be required rather than the construction of new single-use towers as follows:
1. Providers may, and are encouraged to, co-locate antennas onto towers. Provided such co-location is accomplished in a manner consistent with the policy, site criteria, landscape/screening and all other provisions contained in this Section, then such co-locations are permitted by right and new or additional special use review approval is not required, provided that any other permit, license, lease, or franchise requirements must also be satisfied;
2. Unless the corporate authorities determine that co-location is not feasible, the site plan shall delineate an area near the base of the tower to be used for the placement of additional equipment or building for other users. The site plan for towers in excess of one hundred feet (100') must propose space for two (2) or more other users while the site plan for towers under one hundred feet (100') must propose space for one other user. To provide further incentive for co-location as a primary option, an existing tower may be modified or reconstructed to accommodate the co-location of an additional antenna, provided that an application is filed and approved by the Village;
3. Upon the approval of the Village, an existing tower may be modified or rebuilt to a taller height, not to exceed the height limitation for towers and antenna as contained in the Village Zoning Regulations, to accommodate the co-location of additional antennas. The height change may occur only once per tower, and the tower as modified must comply with the other provisions of the Zoning Regulations.
G. Design Criteria:
1. Towers: In order to reduce the number of antenna support structures needed in the Village in the future, any new proposed support structure shall be designed to accommodate antennas for more than one user, unless the applicant demonstrates why such design is not feasible for economic, technical or physical reasons. The Village may deny the application to construct a new tower if the applicant has not made a good faith effort to mount the antenna on an existing structure.
a. Tower Design: Every new tower shall be a monopole rather than a lattice type tower, unless otherwise authorized by the corporate authorities for good cause shown;
b. Setback: Tower setbacks shall be measured from the base of the tower to the property line of the parcel on which it is located. The tower shall comply with the minimum setback requirements of the area in which they are located in all zoning districts in addition to the specific requirements for towers and antennas contained in this Zoning Ordinance. In no event shall the tower be less than two hundred twenty five feet (225') from the closest residential structure.
c. Lights, Signals And Signs: No signals, lights or signs shall be permitted on towers unless required or recommended by the FCC or the FAA.
d. Tower Safety: The applicant shall demonstrate that the proposed tower is safe and the surrounding areas will not be negatively affected by support structure failure, falling ice or other debris or interference. All towers shall be fitted with an anti-climbing device, as approved by the manufacturer.
e. Standards: To ensure the safe operation of towers, the owner of a tower shall maintain the tower in compliance with all FCC and FAA standards and applicable standards of any other governmental agency and the applicable standards for towers that are published by the Electronic Industries Association (EIA), as amended from time to time. If, upon inspection, the Village concludes that a tower fails to comply with such standards or constitutes a danger to persons or property, then upon notice being provided to the owner of the tower, the owner shall have thirty (30) days to bring such tower into compliance with such standards. If the owner fails to bring such tower into compliance within said thirty (30) days, the Village may remove such tower at the owner's expense, or the Village shall have the right to bring the tower into compliance and the costs of which shall constitute a lien on the property and the Village shall have the right to record and enforce said lien.
f. Structural Design: The tower shall be constructed to the EIA standards, which may be amended from time to time, and all applicable construction/building codes. Further, any improvements and/or additions to existing towers shall require submission of site plans sealed and verified by a professional engineer which demonstrate compliance with the EIA standards and all other good industry practices in effect at the time of said improvement or addition. Said plans shall be submitted and reviewed at the time existing building permits are requested.
2. Antenna Criteria: To the extent feasible, antennas on or above a structure shall be subject to the following:
a. The antenna must be architecturally compatible with the building structure or wall on which it is mounted and designed and located so as to minimize any adverse aesthetic impact;
b. The applicant shall demonstrate the antenna is the minimum height required to function satisfactorily;
c. The antenna shall be mounted on a wall of an existing building in a configuration as flush to the wall as technically possible and shall not project above the wall on which it is mounted unless for technical reasons the antenna needs to project above the wall. In no event shall an antenna project more than fifteen feet (15') above the height of the building;
d. The antenna shall be constructed, painted or fully screened to match as closely as possible the color and texture of the building and wall on which it is mounted;
e. The antenna shall be attached to an existing conforming mechanical equipment enclosure which projects above the roof of the building, but may not project any higher than fifteen feet (15') above the enclosure;
f. If an accessory equipment shelter is to be erected or is present, the equipment shelter must blend to the extent practicable with the surrounding buildings in architectural character and color. The structure must be architecturally and visually (color, size and bulk) compatible with surrounding existing buildings, structures and/or uses or those likely to exist on the terms of the underlying zoning;
g. If a proposed antenna is to be located on a building or a lot subject to a special use permit, written Village approval is required prior to the issuance of a building permit for the antenna;
h. No antenna shall be permitted on property designated as an individual landmark or as a part of an historic district or site, unless such antenna has been approved in accordance with this Section and written permission is obtained from the Village;
i. On buildings forty five feet (45') or more in height, the antenna may be mounted on the roof if:
(1) The Village finds that it is not technically possible or aesthetically desirable to mount the antenna on a wall;
(2) No portion of the antenna or base station causes the height of the building to exceed the limitations set forth herein;
(3) Roof-mounted antennas are completely screened from view by materials that are consistent and compatible with design, color, and materials of the building;
(4) No portion of the antenna may extend more than fifteen feet (15') above the height of the existing building;
(5) No antenna shall cause localized interference with the reception or transmission of any other communication signals including, but not limited to, public safety signals, and television and radio broadcast signals.
3. Facilities: Facilities should be architecturally compatible with the surrounding buildings and land uses in the zoning district or otherwise integrated, through location and design, to blend in with the existing characteristics of the site to the extent practicable.
4. Color: Towers and antennas shall have a color generally matching the building, surroundings or background that minimizes their visibility, unless a different color is required by the FCC or FAA. Muted colors, earth tones and subdued colors shall be used wherever possible. The paint on the tower shall be properly maintained.
5. Equipment Structures: Ground level equipment and buildings and the tower base shall be adequately screened. The standards for the equipment buildings are as follows unless otherwise authorized by the corporate authorities for good cause shown.
a. The maximum floor area is four hundred (400) square feet and the maximum height is twelve feet (12'), and the structure shall be designed and constructed so as to facilitate in the joining equipment structure of another provider which would abut the original equipment structure.
b. Ground level buildings shall be screened from adjacent properties by landscape plantings, fencing, or other appropriate means, specified herein or elsewhere in the Village Code.
c. Equipment mounted on a roof shall have a finish similar to the exterior building walls. Equipment for roof-mounted antennas may also be located within the building on which the antennas are mounted, subject to good engineering practices. Antennas and related equipment shall occupy no more than twenty five percent (25%) of the total roof area of a building.
6. Federal Requirements: All towers and antennas must meet or exceed current standards and regulations of the FCC, the FAA, and any other agency of the Federal Government with the authority to regulate towers and antennas. If such standards and regulations are changed, then the owners of the towers and antennas governed by this Section shall bring such towers and antennas into compliance with such revised standards and regulations within three (3) months of the effective date of such standards and regulations, unless a more stringent compliance schedule is mandated by the controlling Federal agency. Upon failure to bring towers and antennas into compliance with such revised standards and regulations, the Village shall have the right to remove said towers and antennas at the owner's expense at any time after sixty (60) days' certified mail, return receipt requested, written notice to the owner at his or her last known address.
7. Fencing: A well constructed wood fence, stucco, masonry or stone wall or other fencing ("fencing") not less than nor more than six feet (6') in height from finished grade shall be provided around each tower. The type of fencing shall be subject to review and approval by the corporate authorities. Security fencing should be colored or should be of a design which blends into the character of the existing environment. Access to the tower shall be through a locked gate.
8. Site Location: Site location and development shall preserve the preexisting character of the site as much as possible. Existing vegetation should be preserved or improved, and disturbance of the existing topography of the site should be minimized, unless such disturbance would result in less visual impact of the site on the surrounding area. The effectiveness of visual mitigation techniques must be evaluated by the Village, in the Village's sole discretion, taking into consideration the site as built.
9. Cooperation: No personal wireless service facility owner or lessee or officer or employee thereof shall act to exclude or attempt to exclude any other personal wireless service provider from using the same building, structure or location. Personal wireless service facility owners or lessees or officers or employees thereof shall cooperate in good faith to achieve co- location of personal wireless service facilities and equipment with other personal wireless service providers pursuant to a commercially reasonable lease agreement. If a dispute arises about the feasibility of accommodating another competitor, the Village may require a third-party technical study, at the expense of either or both parties, to resolve the dispute.
10. Wind: The antennas and their support structures shall be designed to withstand a wind force of one hundred (100) miles per hour without the use of supporting guy wires. No guy or other support wires shall be used in connection with such antennas or their support structures except when used to anchor the antennas or support structures to an existing building.
H. Inspection Requirements: Within thirty (30) days after a facility becomes operational, and each year thereafter, the facility operator shall conduct a safety inspection in accordance with FCC standards and within sixty (60) days of the inspection, file a report with the Village. However, at the option of the Village, the Village may secure the services of an independent safety consultant to conduct a safety inspection and the owner of the facility shall reimburse the Village for the reasonable cost of said inspection. In addition, the facility operator shall provide the Village, on a quarterly basis, a report stating the active or inactive status of the facilities including the tower and antennas. Additionally, in the event there are any increases to the wattage of the tower output, the facility operator shall notify the Village within five (5) business days of any such wattage increase.
1. Landscaping: Reasonable landscaping, as described herein, shall be required to screen as much of the support structure as reasonable and feasible. The fencing surrounding the support structure and any other ground level features (such as a building), shall be designed to soften the appearance of the facilities site. The Village may permit any combination of existing vegetation, berming, topography, walls, decorative fences or other features instead of landscaping, if this achieves the same objective of screening the facility. If the antenna is mounted flush on an existing building, and all other equipment is either housed inside an existing building or screened from view, landscaping shall not be required, except as otherwise required by other provisions of the Village Code or codes for the existing use.
2. Screening: The visual impacts of a tower shall be mitigated through landscaping or other screening materials at the base of the tower and ancillary structures. The following landscaping and buffering of towers shall be required around the perimeter of the tower and accessory structures. Landscaping shall be installed on the outside of fences. Further, existing vegetation shall be preserved to the maximum extent practicable and may be used as a substitute for or to supplement compliance with landscaping requirements.
a. A row of evergreen trees a minimum of ten feet (10') tall at planting at a maximum of six feet (6') apart should be planted around the perimeter of the fence unless adequate landscaping or screening is in place, or as the Village determines otherwise.
b. A continuous hedge at least thirty six inches (36") high at planting capable of growing to at least forty eight inches (48") in height within eighteen (18) months shall be planted in front of the tree line referenced in subsection I2a of this Section unless adequate landscaping or screening is in place or as the Village determines otherwise.
c. Each owner, operator, lessee or licensee shall maintain all fencing and landscaping including replacing any landscaping, if necessary. If the Village specifically requests the owner, operator, lessee or licensee to replace fencing or landscaping, the owner, operator, lessee; or licensee shall properly comply with an such request.
J. Nonuse/Abandonment: In the event the use of any tower or facility has been discontinued for a period of sixty (60) consecutive days, the facility shall be deemed to be abandoned. Determination of the date of abandonment shall be made by the Village which shall have the right to request documentation and/or affidavit from the tower owner or operator regarding the issue of tower usage. Upon such abandonment, the owner or operator of the tower shall have an additional sixty (60) days within which to:
1. Reactivate the use of the tower or transfer the tower to another owner or operator who makes actual use of the tower; or
2. Dismantle and remove the facilities including, but not limited to, the tower, storage shed, fence, driveway and all other ancillary structures and to restore the property including the landscaping to the extent reasonably possible, to the conditions existing at the time of installation of the facility. If such tower is not removed within said sixty (60) days, the Village may remove such tower at the owner's expense. If there are two (2) or more users of a single tower, then this provision shall not become effective until all users cease using the tower. Unnecessary sections of the tower shall be removed.
At the earlier of sixty (60) days from the date of abandonment without reactivation or upon completion of dismantling and removal, Village approval for the tower shall automatically expire. If an abandonment of a tower occurs by all of the permittees, licensees or owner of the tower, the owner of the tower shall remain primarily responsible if the tower ceases to be used for its intended purposes by either it or other permittees or licensees for the transmission or reception of personal wireless services. In the event that the tower ceases to be licensed by the FCC for the transmission of radio energy, the owner of the tower shall maintain the prescribed painting and/or illumination of such tower until it is dismantled. The application for any tower shall be accompanied by a letter of credit in an amount to be determined by the Village which may be drawn upon the Village as necessary to cover the costs of removal of the tower as hereinbefore stated.
K. Application Requirements: All personal wireless service facilities applicants shall, at the discretion of the corporate authorities, be required to submit any combination of site plans, surveys, maps, technical reports or written narratives necessary to convey the following information:
1. A scaled site plan clearly indicating the location, type and height of the proposed tower and antennas, buildings, on-site land uses and zoning, adjacent land uses and zoning, adjacent roadways, proposed means of access, setbacks from property lines, fencing, landscaping and screening and elevation drawings of the proposed tower, and any other proposed structures;
2. A current map or survey showing the location of the proposed tower;
3. Legal description of the parcel;
4. Distance between the proposed tower and the nearest residential unit, platted residentially zoned properties, and unplatted residentially zoned properties;
5. A landscape plan showing specific landscape materials;
6. Method of fencing, and finished color and, if applicable, the method of camouflage and illumination;
7. A statement under oath signed by the applicant stating the tower and antennas will comply with all applicable Federal and State laws and regulations (including specifically FCC and FAA regulations) and this Section:
8. A statement by the applicant as to whether construction of the tower will accommodate co-location of additional antennas for future users;
9. Certification that the antenna usage will not interfere with other transmission or reception functions of other communications facilities;
10. Identification of the entities providing the back haul network for the tower/antennas described in the application;
11. The personal wireless services provider must demonstrate that it is licensed by the FCC, if required to be licensed under FCC regulations, for the provision of service within the Village;
12. The applicant, if not the personal wireless services provider, shall submit proof of lease agreements with an FCC licensed personal wireless services provider if such telecommunications provider is required to be licensed by the FCC;
13. At the time of site selection, the applicant should demonstrate how the proposed site fits into its overall network within the Village, and if the applicant is able or unable to co- locate on the existing structure. The applicant shall submit information requested by the Building and Zoning office and corporate authorities related to the availability of suitable existing towers, other structures or alternative technology. If the applicant believes that co-location is unavailable to applicant and that no reasonable alternative technology exists to accommodate the applicant's evidence to demonstrate that no existing tower, structure or alternative technology can accommodate the applicant's proposed antenna and said evidence may consist of the following:
a. No existing towers or structures are located within the geographical area which meet the applicant's engineering requirements;
b. Existing towers or structures are not of sufficient height to meet the applicant's engineering requirements;
c. Existing towers or structures do not have sufficient structural strength to support the applicant's proposed antenna and related equipment;
d. The applicant's proposed antenna would cause electromagnetic interference with the antennas on the existing towers or structures, or the antennas on the existing towers or structures would cause interference with the applicant's proposed antenna;
e. The fees, costs, or contractual provisions required by the owner in order to share an existing tower or structure or to accept an existing tower or structure for sharing are unreasonable. Costs exceeding new tower development are presumed to be unreasonable;
f. The applicant demonstrates that there are other limiting factors that render existing towers and structures unsuitable; and
g. The applicant demonstrates that an alternative technology that does not require the use of towers or structures, such as a cable micro-cell network using multiple low-powered transmitters/receivers attached to a wire line system, is unsuitable. Costs of alternative technology that exceed newer tower or antenna development shall not be presumed to render the technology unsuitable.
All pending or new applications for the siting of personal wireless services facilities shall comply with the provisions set forth in this Section.
L. Third Party Review: The personal wireless services providers use various methodologies and analysis tools, including geographically based computer software, to determine the specific technical parameters of personal wireless services, such as expected coverage area, antenna configuration and topographic constraints that affect signal paths. In certain instances there may be a need for expert review by a third party of the technical data submitted by the personal wireless services provider. The Village may require such a technical review, to be paid for by the applicant for the personal wireless services facilities. The selection of the third party expert may be by mutual agreement between the applicant and the Village or at the discretion of the Village, with a provision for the applicant and interested parties to comment on the proposed expert and review its qualifications. The expert review is intended to be a site specific review of technical aspects of the personal wireless services facilities and not a subjective review of the site selection. Such a review should address the accuracy and completeness of the technical data, whether the analysis, techniques and methodologies are legitimate, the validity of the conclusions and any specific technical issues outlined by the Board of Trustees, the Building and Zoning Officer, Village staff, third party consultants or other interested parties. Based on the results of the third party review, the Village may require changes to the application for the personal wireless services facilities that comply with the recommendations of the expert.
M. Remedies: Any person, firm or corporation violating any of the provisions or terms of this Section upon conviction shall be punishable by fine not to exceed seven hundred fifty dollars ($750.00) for each day during which the offense continues. In addition to a fine, the Village shall have the right to seek injunctive relief for any and all violations of this Section and all other remedies provided at law or in equity. If the Village prevails in any action at law or in equity, the Village shall also be entitled to recover its attorney fees, costs and all other expenses incurred in conjunction therewith, as may be summarily assessed and awarded by the court as part of its judgment.
N. Severability: Should any paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase or word of this Section be declared invalid or unconstitutional by a court or agency of competent jurisdiction, such invalidity or unconstitutionality shall not affect any of the remaining paragraphs, sentences, clauses, phrases or words of this section, all of which will remain in full force and effect. (Ord. 98-14, 2-2-1998)