BWCAW cell phone tower lawsuit heads to trial

Near Ely
Near Ely

An environmental group is going to court April 11 to try to block AT & T's plan to build a 450-foot cell phone tower near the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.

The Associated Press reports that Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness is claiming the flashing lights would be visible from several lakes and waterways within the BWCAW. It also says the tower would endanger migratory birds. The group says AT & T's own study shows it could provide nearly as much coverage with a shorter tower or two.

AT & T Mobility LLC says one tall tower would do the best job of extending cell phone service to residents and cabins east of Ely and allow wilderness paddlers to call for help in emergencies.

The trial before Hennepin County District Judge Philip Bush is expected to last most of this week.


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