U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander and Rep. Zach Wamp today urged federal agencies to reconsider whether construction of a 150-foot cell phone tower on the slope of Chattanooga’s Missionary Ridge, adjacent to the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park and Missionary Ridge National Historic District, would have an adverse impact on those historic properties. The proposed tower site is about 850 feet from the park border and about 400 feet from the historic district, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
“There has to be some alternative to building a gigantic cell tower right in the middle of one of the most scenic and historic areas in Tennessee,” Alexander said. “This is one of the few places where visitors and historians can access a panoramic view that allows them to better understand one of the most decisive battles of the Civil War. We need to do everything we can to preserve that historic view.”
One letter directly requests that the Federal Commissions Commission reopen its investigation – required under the National Historic Preservation Act – of whether the project would have an adverse impact on historic property. A second letter urges the National Park Service to join the effort to have the project reconsidered, noting that last year the agency failed to provide input during the initial review of the project’s impact on the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park.
Alexander sits on the Senate’s Environment & Public Works Committee and the Interior Subcommittee of the Senate’s Appropriations Committee.