Nationwide tower company, NEPA services

Apr 3, 2024

THE facts and figures

EBI Consulting was retained by a nationwide tower company to perform a full National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) assessment for a proposed macro telecommunications tower. EBI performed architectural, archaeological, biological, tribal and other assessments and consulted with the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and Tribal Historic Preservation Office (THPO) as defined by the FCC’s Tower Construction Notification System.

proposed macro telecommunication tower

Historic sites adressed

CHALLENGES

In performing the archaeological and architectural assessments, EBI found that a National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) District, NRHP Site, historic trail, and SHPO eligible facility were located within a half-mile radius of the Area of Potential Effects – Visual Effects (APE-VE) and Area of Potential Effect – Direct Effects (APE-DE) of the proposed new macro cell tower. Due to the potential for visual impacts to the various historic elements, we determined further investigation was required to assess the impact on the visual integrity of the area.

SOLUTION

EBI consultants utilized our in-house Geographic Information System (GIS) team to provide data analysis on the proposed tower that might impact the four historic elements. The GIS team utilized Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI) software to enter the geographic location of the tower and LiDAR data to assess tower height with the associated half-mile APE-VE buffer. Once the digital surface model representing tower height, ground elevation and surface features was compiled, the team used a series of spatial analysis techniques to determine potential visibility from the historic features within the study area.

OUTCOME

EBI’s efforts helped assist the applicant’s due diligence efforts to support the feasibility of the proposed tower. Using existing spatial databases and digitized historic features, the GIS team created robust analysis tools to support the identification of locations susceptible to visual impacts. They then used the modeling results to understand the extent of the visual data, defining regions and locations that would be directly affected by the proposed tower, as well as additional layer geodata demarcating if surrounding vegetation would impede the visual impacts on the four historic features.

SERVICES EBI PROVIDED

  • Full NEPA
  • Architectural, archaeological, biological, tribal and assessment services
  • Environmental Site Assessment
  • SHPO/THPO coordination

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