Cool reception for Telstra dish

A proposed satellite dish station has been put on hold at a Telstra exchange in Keysborough.

By Cam Lucadou-Wells

A proposed Telstra satellite dish station in Keysborough has been put on hold by Greater Dandenong councillors.

Neighbouring residents had opposed the 1.8-metre wide dish hovering near their fenceline at the back of the 46-year-old telecommunications exchange on 359-363 Cheltenham Road.

The “satellite ground network earth station” would stand up to 2.5 metres tall near an adjoining resident’s fence, according to a council report tabled on 13 December.

In support, council officers stated the impact was “reasonable” given the “numerous examples” of larger and higher satellite dishes on home roofs.

The dish – used to “provide reliable Telstra cellular services” for mobile users – would also be “largely screened” by existing trees on the site.

The report also dismissed neighbours’ concerns about electromagnetic emissions – which were found to be “compliant” with Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency standards.

It was also unlikely to significantly disrupt residents’ TV and radio reception.

“If the application was to be appealed to VCAT, it is the officer’s view that it is highly likely that VCAT would also issue a planning permit for this proposal,” the report stated.

On 13 December, Greater Dandenong councillor Rhonda Garad successfully moved for the proposal’s deferral until 24 January to seek a “negotiated outcome” between Telstra and neighbours.

The issue is expected to be further deferred with talks yet to eventuate.