1Industry Canada's Position on Property Values


Though not originally part of the scope of the National Tower Policy Review in 2004, David Townsend (the chairperson and author of the report) took up the question during the national dialogue which occurred. The recommendation from that report was as follows:


"Recommendation 34: That the impact (positive or negative) that an proposed antenna installation may have upon the property values of particular parcels of land should not be the subject of an antenna consultation."


The rationale behind the recommendation was that :


"Generally, land-use planning authorities are not required to take such impacts into account when siting urban and rural infrastructure that concerned members of the public may find objectionable. Almost every planning decision will produce positive and negative impacts upon the value of land located in the immediate vicinity.


This recommendation is consistent with the way in which the telecommunication and planning policies of Wales handle issues related to claims of loss of property values. The planning and development authorities will address the possible impact on property values only if there is evidence of a negative effect on the locality as a whole. To quote from the policy itself:


'Authorities may receive representations about alleged impact of proposed telecommunications development on property values. It is not for the planning system to protect the private interests of one person against the activities of another. Although in a particular case considerations of public interest may serve to protect private interests, the material Question is not whether a particular development would cause financial or other loss to owners or occupiers of the neighbouring property, but whether the proposal would have a detrimental effect on the locality generally, and on amenities that ought, in the public interest, to be protected.' [Wales, Planning Policy, Technical Advice Note No. 19 Telecommunications, Policy on Property Values, National Assembly for Wales, Cardiff, ISBN 0 7504 2900 3, 2002 at para. 48. ]"


Based on this, Industry Canada has outlined in CPC 2-0-03, Section 4.2 that property values are not deemed to be a "relevant concern" with respect to antenna siting consultations, and therefore it does not represent a criteria by which an application for a proposed radiocommunications facility should be evaluated.


2Market Evidence relating to Property Values



Other research from market sources suggest that the market values of property surrounding telecommunications sites were adversely affected to some degree by tower sites.


More specifically, the demographic of interested buyers changed as some buyers were indifferent to structures such as towers and other municipal infrastructure (such as water reservoirs or high voltage power distribution lines), while other buyers were not be interested in properties which were in close proximity to those structures.


As such it was viewed that the presence or lack of a cellular tower was no more detrimental to the marketability of a property than any other outdoor feature associated with a real estate transaction including lot size, foliage, water courses, and surrounding amenities. While visual amenity plays some role in the marketability of a property in proximity to a tower structure, it was far more important that any concerns over health issues be addressed.


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