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Local Tower Regulations

City of Lockhart

In the City of Lockhart, antenna regulations are part of the City Ordinances. §64-2 contains definitions of wireless transmission facilities. A section that may be applicable to some Amateur Radio towers and antennas is §64-202, "Additional Requirements for Wireless Telecommunications Facilities".

§64-2 Definitions

Wireless telecommunication facility--high impact:  Exterior apparatus designed 
for telephonic, radio, or television communication through the transmission or
reception of electromagnetic waves, and which consists of one or more antennas
mounted on a new freestanding tower  that exceeds the lesser of 60 feet, or 
five feet above the maximum permitted building height of the applicable zoning
district. This definition does not include an antenna structure used 
exclusively for dispatch communications by a public emergency agency, which 
is exempt.

Wireless telecommunication facility--low impact: Exterior apparatus designed 
for telephonic, radio, or television communication through the transmission 
or reception of electromagnetic waves, and which consists of any of the three 
types of antenna locations listed below. This definition does not include the 
following, which are exempt: 1) an antenna used exclusively for dispatch 
communications by a public emergency agency; 2) home use of an accessory 
antenna or satellite dish which receives television broadcast signals; and, 
3) an amateur radio antenna not exceeding by more than five feet the maximum 
permitted building height of the zoning district within which it is located.

  (1) An antenna mounted as an accessory on a building, water tower, lighting
      standard, electric utility transmission tower, or other tall structure 
      having another primary function allowed in the zoning district within 
      which it is located;

  (2) An antenna mounted on an existing tower that already supports one or 
      more telecommunication antennas; or,

  (3) An antenna mounted on a new freestanding tower not exceeding the lesser
      of 60 feet, or five feet above the maximum building height of the 
      zoning district within which it is located.

§64-2 Additional Requirements for Wireless Telecommunications Facilities

(a) Existing facilities:  Any wireless telecommunication facility for which a 
    permit has been properly issued prior to April 8, 1998, shall not be 
    required to meet the requirements of this chapter as they relate to
    wireless telecommunication facilities other than requirements of the 
    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Federal Communications 
    Commission (FCC). However, any alteration of an existing facility on or 
    after April 8, 1998 shall be subject to all applicable requirements.

(b) Code requirements: Wireless telecommunication facilities of any type must 
    comply with all applicable requirements of the FAA and FCC, as documented 
    in writing from the approving authority at the time of building permit 
    application. Freestanding towers and their foundations shall meet all 
    wind, seismic, and all other design requirements of the adopted building 
    code. Drawings and specifications shall be prepared and sealed by a 
    registered professional engineer and shall be submitted with the building 
    permit application. Permits are required for new construction or 
    alteration of a tower, although additional antennas not increasing the 
    height of the structure may be added to an existing tower without permits 
    except as may be needed for electrical wiring.

(c) Co-location capability: New freestanding towers classified as a wireless 
    telecommunication facility--high impact containing antennas for purposes 
    other than commercial radio or television broadcast shall be designed and 
    constructed to support a minimum of four antenna arrays from separate 
    wireless telecommunication system providers or users. An affidavit shall 
    be submitted with the building permit application stating the extent to 
    which the tower owner agrees to allow additional equipment by other 
    service providers to be located on the tower and its premises on a 
    reasonable and non-discriminatory basis.

(d) Availability of sites: Each applicant for administrative approval or a 
    specific use permit for a new freestanding tower containing antennas for
    purposes other than commercial radio or television broadcast shall 
    provide an inventory of its existing towers within the city and its 
    extraterritorial jurisdiction, including specific information about the 
    location, height, and design of each such tower and the number of antennas 
    that may be supported by it. A building permit for new freestanding towers
    shall not be approved unless the applicant provides satisfactory evidence 
    that there are no alternative locations available on existing towers, 
    buildings, or other structures that: 1) are structurally capable of 
    supporting the intended antenna; 2) meet the necessary height 
    requirements; 3) provide a location free of electromagnetic interference; 
    and, 4) can comply with the requirements of this chapter.

(e) Abandoned facilities: The owner of the property shall notify the building 
    official at such time that a wireless telecommunication facility ceases 
    operation. Any tower or antenna that is not operated for a continuous 
    period of 12 months shall be considered abandoned, and the owner of such 
    tower or antenna, or the owner of the property, shall remove same 
    including any accessory equipment, within 60 days of receipt of notice 
    from the city. If the tower or antenna is not removed within said 60 days,
    the city may cause removal of such tower or antenna at the property 
    owner's expense. After written notice to the property owner, the city may 
    place a lien on the property until the city is reimbursed for the cost of 
    removal of the abandoned wireless telecommunication facility. If there 
    are two or more users of a single tower, this provision shall not become 
    effective until all antennas located on the tower cease operation for the 
    period specified above.

(f) Facilities on public property: Wireless telecommunication facilities for 
    use by commercial system providers may be allowed in a street right-of-way
    or on other public property controlled by the city only upon approval by 
    the city council of a lease, license, or franchise agreement, including
    arrangements for payment of appropriate compensation as may be established
    by the city council.

(g) Prohibited location: No freestanding tower, or commercial antenna attached
    to any other structure, shall be erected in a location in the city where 
    the tower or antenna would be visible when viewed by eyes five feet eight 
    inches above ground level from any portion of the county courthouse 
    property or abutting portions of Main, San Antonio, Commerce and Market 
    street rights-of-way. This does not prohibit locations that are otherwise
    permitted by this chapter and where the line of sight is blocked by 
    buildings or other structures existing at the time of application for 
    approval of the wireless telecommunication facility. Future removal of 
    such buildings or other structures shall not change the status of a
    wireless telecommunication facility to nonconforming.

(h) Access: Each site of a freestanding tower shall have direct access to a 
    public street provided by a driveway meeting city standards. The driveway 
    shall extend from the street to an appropriate location on the premises 
    where a vehicle would need to be parked to facilitate normal maintenance 
    of the facility.

(i) Height: No wireless communication facility shall encroach upon the height 
    limits, if applicable, of Lockhart Municipal Airport hazard zones as 
    adopted December 18, 1991. In no case shall a freestanding tower exceed 
    a height of 200 feet, except where a height variance is granted by the 
    board of adjustments due to demonstration of a hardship by the applicant 
    that can only be remedied by location of the facility on the proposed 
    site within the city limits. Antennas mounted as an accessory on top of 
    a building, water tower, lighting standard, electric utility transmission 
    tower , or other tall structure having another primary function shall 
    not extend more than 15 feet above the highest point of the structure 
    as measured from the average ground level around the structure.

(j) Setbacks: A nonexempt freestanding tower shall be setback from all 
    boundaries of the property on which it is located by a distance equal to 
    the height of the tower, and shall be setback from any residential 
    dwelling or residential zoning district a distance equal to twice the 
    height of the tower, as measured from the base of the main tower 
    structure. Associated equipment enclosures or other buildings and 
    structures, and guy wire anchors, if any, located on the same property 
    are subject to the normal building setback requirements of the district 
    within which the facility is located. Antennas mounted as an accessory 
    on the side of a building, water tower, lighting standard, electric 
    utility transmission tower , or other tall structure having another 
    primary function, may extend up to two feet into the required building 
    setback, but in no case shall extend closer than five feet to any 
    property line.

(k) Illumination and appearance: Wireless telecommunication facilities shall 
    not be artificially illuminated except as required by the FAA or FCC, 
    and except for motion-detector operated security lights on any associated 
    equipment enclosure. Freestanding towers shall maintain a galvanized steel
    finish or be painted sky blue or gray, except as otherwise required by 
    the FAA or FCC. Unless the tower compound is screened by any means from
    adjacent streets, residential dwellings, and residential zoning districts,
    the design of equipment enclosures shall, to the extent possible, use 
    materials and colors that are compatible with the natural and built 
    environment of the surrounding area. Antennas mounted as an accessory 
    on a building, water tower, lighting standard, electric utility 
    transmission tower, or other tall structure having another primary 
    function shall be identical in color or closely compatible with the color 
    of the adjacent portion of the supporting structure so as to make the 
    antenna as visually unobtrusive as possible.

(l) Security and screening: The base of freestanding towers, and associated 
    equipment enclosures shall be enclosed by a security fence or wall not 
    less than six feet in height with an access gate that is kept locked at 
    all times except when attended by authorized personnel. The base of the 
    tower and associated equipment enclosures shall also be screened on any 
    side facing a public street, residential dwelling, or residential zoning 
    district in accordance with any one or more of the following 
    alternatives: 1) preserve existing dense evergreen vegetation or natural 
    landforms that effectively screen the tower compound; 2) plant new dense 
    evergreen vegetation having a mature height of at least six feet, or 
    3) construct the security fencing to provide opaque screening consisting 
    of materials and colors that are compatible with the natural and built 
    environment of the surrounding area.

(m) Signage: No sign, banner, or flag shall be placed in a visible location 
    on the exterior of a wireless telecommunication facility or its premises 
    except one non-illuminated permanent sign not larger than two square feet
    for the purpose of identification in the case of an emergency. No 
    commercial advertising is permitted.

(n) Historic districts.  Any wireless telecommunication facility to be 
    installed outside of a building anywhere in a historic district 
    established by the city council shall be subject to approval of a 
    certificate of alteration by the city historical preservation commission.

For more information, see the City of Lockhart Website.

DISCLAIMER: This information is provided "as is" without any warranty, condition, or representation of any kind, either express or implied, including but not limited to, any warranty respecting non-infringement, and the implied warranties of conditions of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. In no event shall the Central Texas DX and Contest Club, or any officers or members thereof be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, consequential or other damages howsoever caused whether arising in contract, tort, or otherwise, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of the information contained on this web site.

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Last updated: 2 February 2014