Workers install the new Telus cell phone tower in downtown Revelstoke.

Workers install the new Telus cell phone tower in downtown Revelstoke.

UPDATE: New downtown tower slips past planning department

What would Seattle's skyline be without the Space Needle? Likewise, Vancouver's profile is distinguished by the rotating lookout atop the Harbour Centre.

May 9, 2011 update

The new cell tower in downtown Revelstoke is being installed it increase capacity to mobile phones and mobile devices in the downtown core.

Telus spokesperson Shawn Hall said that usage of the systems had “absolutely exploded” in recent years, and the new tower has added capabilities to handle that need.

Modern cell phones have many Internet capabilities, and require lots of bandwidth to perform functions like downloading video or music over Telus’ 3G network.

Hall said the new cellular system replaces an older one that was decommissioned. The new system adds more capacity, but doesn’t increase the coverage area.

The new tower is 14 metres high; and is complete now with its existing crown of pointy antennae. It replaces a drum-shaped device that used to sit atop one of two previous, shorter towers. That device was actually microwave technology that was used for land telephone lines.

Hall said he didn’t know the height of the towers that were there before.

Hall said that notification to the city about the changes wasn’t necessary because the tower “fits the zoning” in the area.

A City of Revelstoke planning department staff member said they’d requested information on the project from Telus.

Telus is also in the process of adding new towers west of town that will increase the coverage area, particularly on Highway 1, as reported previously.


May 3, 2011 original story

What would Seattle’s skyline be without the Space Needle? Likewise, Vancouver’s profile is distinguished by the rotating lookout atop the Harbour Centre.

It seems that downtown Revelstoke will boast its own distinctive downtown tower, which with age could one day blend into the downtown heritage district.

This morning, work crews with a crane were installing a big, new tower that looks to be between two and three stories high. It is located at the  complex at the corner of Connaught Avenue and Second Street.

Parked on a truck outside the complex was a big drum-shaped piece of equipment that we’re assuming goes on top of the tower. It looked to be about eight feet in diameter and about four feet deep — that’s our best estimate.

We did call the City of Revelstoke’s planning department. Planner Lori Donato said they were unaware of what was going on, saying they would look into it and send the building inspector over to take a look. She also said they would also be in touch with Telus.

We did call Telus (about an hour ago), but we haven’t heard back from them. We’ll update this story when we hear from them.

In the meantime, we wanted to get this story online so our readers could go have a look at the installation for themselves.

A satellite photo of the site does show a similar structure was in place, but if memory serves us right, this tower seems much taller — but we could be wrong.

We’ll update the story when more info is available.