The New York Botanical Garden, still fighting the completion of a nearby 480-foot tower for WFUV-FM, told the FCC late in October that the station should disguise the antenna as a 185-foot double flagpole. In its reply to the commission, WFUV said the notion was “without technical or practical merit” and asked for approval of its construction permit.
The botanists are “trying to sidetrack the commission” and extend the two-and-a-half-year delay, says Ralph Jennings, g.m. Before proposing the double flagpole, the garden had suggested a stone tower to hold the antenna, but it was not feasible, he says. “All these things would be pretty, but they’re about 200 feet high, which is no higher than what we’ve got now.”
The garden hired Washington engineers Cohen, Dippell and Everist to work with architects, who came up with the flagpole design, and commended the idea to other communities where stark towers are planned.
The garden also accused WFUV of lack of candor, suggesting that it really wants the tall tower, now half-built, to provide rental space for commercial antennas. Jennings says WFUV has “no plan to do anything commercial with the tower.”