CULLOWHEE - Can you hear me now?

When customers of Verizon Wireless are asked that question while making cell phone calls from the Cullowhee area, the answer soon will be a resounding “yes.”

That’s because Western’s board of trustees recently approved the installation of a cell phone antenna on the roof of Scott Hall, the tallest structure on the university campus.

The antenna will not be a typical tower, but rather a 10-foot-pod containing three antennas and resembling a vent pipe, said Chuck Wooten, Western’s vice chancellor for administration and finance.

“The antenna will be designed to have minimal impact and be aesthetically unobtrusive,” Wooten told the trustees during their quarterly meeting Dec. 5. “It should greatly enhance cell phone service not just on campus, but throughout the entire Cullowhee Valley.”

Through the agreement approved by Western’s board, Verizon Wireless will lease the rooftop space at the rate of $15,000 per year for an initial term of five years, with four renewable terms of five years each for a potential overall lease term of 25 years.

The project is subject to the Jackson County cell phone tower ordinance, and Verizon must submit an application for the installation, Wooten said.

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Last modified: Monday, December 15, 2003
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