It was only a test.
But it was one that made the potential reality of a new cellular tower placed in a residential neighborhood very possible.
Joe Poluhovich and his neighbors on Califon Road spent part of their holiday weekend watching personnel from Sprint test a site at the Centenary College Equestrian Facility atop Schooley’s Mountain for a test of the height and location for a possible monopole structure.
Poluhovich said the township told him a test would be done by the company, but there was never a timetable for when it would actually happen, he said.
So on the morning of Friday, Nov. 29, Poluhovich looked out his window and saw a crane being erected right along his neighbor’s fence.
The communications company is also seeking a variance on a setback rule requiring structures be built 1,000 feet from the nearest property.
Centenary College’s equestrian facility owns 65 acres of land on the property; all but five of which are preserved.
When Poluhovich spoke with the Sprint members conducting the test, he asked if there would be a red beacon atop the pole.
“(The workers) said that was up the to the FAA,” said the seven-year Califon Road resident who built a website fighting the cell tower. “I went and laid in my bed upstairs in my house, and sure enough, I could see – from my bed – the exact location of where a red beacon would be.”
Antennas would be placed at the 150-foot level, and the remaining 21 feet would be in the form of a decorative windmill, Sprint told Poluhovich.
Sprint’s next appearance before the zoning board was originally scheduled for Dec. 4, but the applicant has canceled.
Poluhovich said no new notices from Centenary, Sprint, or Washington Township have come regarding any additional tests.