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Cornelius News

Controversial cell tower erected overlooking Jetton

Workers put up 199-foot cell tower

Dec. 27. By Dave Yochum. A year after the Cornelius Town Board voted 3-2 to allow a 199-foot cell phone tower just off Jetton Road, the massive structure has been erected at the entrance to Lake Norman Cove where Anthony Grisanti said it will bring “blight” to the neighborhood.

Cell tower arrived in pieces. Photo: Anthony Grisanti

Michael Miltich, Tricia Sisson and Thurman Ross, the three commissioners who voted for the tower, said they believed it would support better cell service. All three were ousted in November—their votes on the cell tower as well as other development projects were blamed. 


Grisanti wants the newly elected Town Board members to investigate the approval process, “environmental concerns and the blight this tower will bring to Cornelius and its residents.”


Commissioners Jim Duke and Denis Bilodeau expressed concerns about the cell tower last year and voted against it. Duke said six homeowner associations were opposed to the tower which is replacing a much smaller one. Unclear then as now is the impact of several much smaller cell nodes installed down Jetton and John Connor.


Bilodeau was re-elected, while Duke lost.

A review—after the fact

Improved cell reception remains an important infrastructure concern, Bilodeau said.

“I will be asking our new board to join me in requesting a proactive review of the effectiveness and placement of cell towers within our town,” he said.

There was no independent review of alternatives to the 199-foot tower last year.