Edinburgh residents and local councillor oppose 5G mast on New Swanston Road

Local residents and a Labour councillor are in strong opposition to a new 5G mast that is to be erected on the Oxgangs Road side of New Swanston Road in the South of Edinburgh.

Thursday, 10th June 2021, 12:30 pm

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They say that they are not opposed to the Three UK 5G masts but that the positioning of the unit will be a danger to pedestrians and that the design does not fit the surrounding environment.

According to the Edinburgh City Council planning site the “telecoms apparatus will be situated 96 metres to the east of 30 New Swanston Edinburgh.

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The street pole will be 18 metres high and be accompanied by three large cabinets with ancillary works coloured green.

Judith Puller, a local resident, had said that she fears the location of the mast will lead to accidents for pedestrians on a stretch of road that has had a history with pedestrian collisions.

She said: “Our main concern is that it narrows the pavement making it difficult to navigate if you are on the school run or out in a bigger group. The road it runs along is also rather busy with delivery lorries, busses and other traffic congesting the road.

Local Labour councillor Scott Arthur at the site of the proposed mast.

“I worry to think what a mother with a buggy and children up above will have to deal with when trying to navigate the narrow stretch of pavement."

She was joined by an IT technician who did not wish to be named but had called out the plan as ‘anti-spaces for people.’

He said: “At the moment the council is running a spaces for people initiative but this is completely going against the grain. We have no objections as a community to the 5G mast but feel it will hamper the safety of pedestrians by making the stretch of pavement to thin.

“There are plenty of spaces within a 50 yard radius of the proposed site that would be welcomed by the community.

“At the moment it will stick out like a sore thumb and could lead to a serious incident if residents cannot properly navigate the path.”

They were joined in their condemnation by local councillor Scott Arthur

He said: “I am disappointed that this application has been submitted despite many concerns being raised by local people about the loss of amenity and obstruction of footpaths at the pre-application stage.

“I would urge local residents to respond to these consultations in the hope that it will force Three UK to reconsider its position.

“To be clear, I am not saying 5G is unsafe but I do think the wrong place has been selected for this mast.”

Any residents wishing to raise an objection to the plans has until June 14 to do so through the council’s website: citydev-portal.edinburgh.gov.uk/idoxpa-web/applicationDetails

A Three spokesperson said: “Access to 5G has a vital role to play in boosting local economies, helping residents and businesses get faster and more reliable network coverage. This mast will be critical to making that happen.

“While we try to keep mast sites as unobtrusive as possible, they do need to be situated near to where people will be using the service and, in many cases, in precise locations to ensure the widest breadth of coverage”

The council does not comment on active planning proposals.

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