FAA studies plan to put radio towers near airport

By LESLIE MORIARTY

Herald Writer

SNOHOMISH — The Renton office of the Federal Aviation Administration is continuing to assess the safety factors involved in a proposal to locate radio towers on Lord’s Hill, near Harvey Airport.

"The aeronautical study is still in progress," said Duane Van Hoosen, an FAA airspace management specialist. "We are waiting for all the needed information from officials at Harvey Field."

Information about the longitude and latitude for the end of the runway at Harvey Airport is pending from owner Kandace Harvey, Van Hoosen said. Once that information and other data arrives, he plans to compile it and determine whether the radio towers could safely be placed close to the airport.

KRKO in Everett is asking Snohomish County to grant a conditional use permit to allow the station to locate five, and possibly as many as eight, radio towers from 425 to 466 feet tall at 11304 132nd St. SE.

The county’s commercial permit division is processing the application. Because the proposed location of the towers is close to the airport, the FAA must gives its approval before the permit process can proceed.

Neighbors have expressed environmental concerns, questioned the aesthetics of so many towers, and some have written letters to the county asking that the project be stopped. Safety also concerns neighbors, since the area is so close to the airport.

Van Hoosen said the FAA is accepting comments from citizens, as well as pilots, balloonists and those who parachute in the area. The FAA is expected to make a ruling by Dec. 18.

KRKO officials said the new antennas would allow the station to increase its power from 5,000 to 50,000 watts, making it one of the five most powerful radio stations in the state.

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