Germany: UMTS Antenna Construction Banned?

According to the administrative law judges in Düsseldorf, mobile
communications antennas can no longer be built on the roofs of houses in
pure residential areas.

On Friday last week, the Düsseldorf Administrative
Court barred the mobile communications company DeTeMobil (Deutsche Telekom)
from continuing construction of a mobile communications mast in a
residential area in Kaarst, near Neuss. Residents had pressed for
construction to come to a halt.

“If the decision is upheld, it could
seriously thwart the plans of mobile communications providers,” conclude the
online editors of Stiftung Warentest, the German consumer advice
organization. This could mean the end of the construction of the UMTS
networks, or it could at least cause long delays.

In order for the network to have full coverage, between 50,000 and 100,000
transmitters must be built. The court’s decision was not made on the basis
of possible health risks, however. The transmitters would mean that the
buildings were being used for commercial purposes, which goes against
development plans, in the opinion of the judges. But the Düsseldorf decision
is not yet final.

“The Supreme Administrative Court will probably overrule
the ban on construction,” the Stiftung Warentest editors report.

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