Some Boulder residents want new police communication tower’s location reconsidered

BOULDER, Colo. -- A new communication tower will help keep Boulder residents safe, but some say a new location needs to be considered.

The Boulder Police Department said its radio system was designed 30 years ago. The city has grown, so now there are coverage gaps in some areas, putting first responders and the community at risk.

"Radio communications are a lifeline for first responders," said BPD Deputy Chief Curtis Johnson.

A 150-foot telecommunications tower is slated to be built near an open space off Arapahoe and Westview roads to increase the coverage area.

Some people who live nearby say they are concerned about how the tower will look and how it will affect property values.

"I have seen raccoons, I’ve seen rabbits and then a tower? How disturbing is that?" said one homeowner.

However, other people in the area say the tower is necessary.

"If it’s going to help police and fire and first responders to do their job, to me, that’s more important than a visual impact," said another homeowner.

Johnson said the tower's benefits outweigh its visual impact.

"I get that that our skyline is something we cherish, but sometimes, we have to make sacrifices in the name of public safety," said Johnson.

The city says 82 percent of Boulder voters supported a safety tax that pays for the new radio system. A public hearing is scheduled for 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 2.

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