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From Forbes to Greenhills to Ayala Alabang: Posh villages are biggest stumbling blocks to Smart, Globe’s tower expansion

Social acceptance.

This is the number one reason cited by practically all exclusive subdivisions blocking the installation of towers inside the walls of their high-priced addresses, according to the National Telecommunications Commission in a report to Congress.

The NTC said Globe Telecom and PLDT- Smart’s infrastructure roll-out have ground to halt once the home owners associations (HOA) decided they would not allow any cell installations in their backyard even if this would mean more efficient and stable signals for the greater number of Filpinos.

HOAs and individual residents are adamant that cell antennas and towers were just plain ugly and lead to a big drop in property values. HOAs also perceive that radio frequency radiation emissions from these towers could pose health hazards to residents despite lack of evidence.

While most local government units (LGUs) have obeyed President Rodrigo Duterte’s ultimatum to cut the approval process of cell sites to less than a month, the rich HOAs have further dug in their heels to fortify the pushback against the entry of lobe and Smart towers.

In a report to the NTC, Globe and Smart said their cell installations were rejected outright in Acropolis, White Plains, Philamlife, Betterliving, Ayala Heights, Greenmeadows, Valle Verde, Loyola Grand Villas, North Greenhills and McKinley properties in Taguig.

Even if Globe or Smart obtained HOA approval, some residents would still block the towers such as in Forbes Park, Corinthian Gardens, La Vista, San Lorenzo, Hillsborough and BF Homes

In Dasmarinas Village, some residents sued the HOA and LGU to block any tower.

In Bel-Air Village, the residents rejected the tower proposal and dismantled the existing Smart cell site.

In New Manila Horseshoe Village, the barangay issued an ordinance banning the construction of any installation.

In Ayala Alabang, Globe has installed three cell sites in the park but is having difficulty getting the green light or for more.

Globe and Smart are also finding opposition in high-end enclaves outside Metro Manila such as Valley Golf and Town & Country in Antipolo; Araneta Village in Malabon; Gol Tagaytay Highlands; Pico de Loro and Punta Fuego in Batangas; Portfonio and Verdan in Cavite; ,Southwoods and Brentville in Laguna.

Even LGUs have put up roadblocks to cell sites: Trece Martires, Dasmarinas and Ternate in Cavite; Lucena City in Quezon; El Nido in Palawan; Binan and Alamnis in Laguna; Baguio City; Solano in Nueva Vizcaya; Maria Luisa and Paseo San Ramon in Cebu City, and Jacinto in Davao City.

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