Using Utility Poles


#1

I have a small urban WISP using UBNT equipment now, after seeing the A5’s and the micropop model and reading this page.

I reached out the the Public utility here and got some pricing, and was wondering if anyone has experience working with a utility. The pricing I got was much higher then what was quoted in the above article and to mount above the power lines they want to do pole replacements and said its was $8K - $16K per pole.

Are there options to get above the power lines and get the necessary clearance without pole replacement?

Thanks for any input.


#2

Having over 30 years dealing with pole attachments, and as we are getting ready to do a major deployment with Mimosa gear, I would suggest 2 options.

  1. Use “L” brackets in the “communications space” which would be either just above or below the cable/phone cables. Even then there may be “make ready” costs which could involve pole replacement, but the annual per pole attachment fee will generally be ~$20.
  2. The model we are going with, buy poles from the power company and have them set in city/utility easements. You’ll find that the power company will be more receptive to NOT having more on their poles and the pricing is pretty reasonable. One thing though is that you’ll need to have access to city easements which requires some type of agreement with the city.

#3

Daniel,

Thanks for the feedback.

My discussion with the utility has been with the person who obviously dealing with cell phone companies and the rate he quoted me was $1700+/year/pole with an annual increase of 4%. The price was the same for a bracket bellow the power lines and above the communication space or above power line attachment plus the cost of pole replacement. Sounds like I should consider working in just the communications space and ask about that pricing and install more micropops.

While option 2 sounds nice I just don’t have the budget currently for that kind of investment.


#4

Actually, compared to $1700/year (which is NOT a normal pole attachment fee!), you could buy a new pole of your own for about that much. Installed. Big poles cost more, but they’re the poor man’s towers. So see if you can get access to the roadside RoW.


#5

The Florida Legislature has passed HB 687 and sent it to the Governor for signature. A PDF of the bill is here.

Here is an article about the panic cities were in that this bill might pass. Now cities have to actually treat wireless equipment installations fairly, which from their point of view is a disaster since it deprives them of nearly all their power over you.

I trust that Mimosans will soon give Florida’s cities what they fully deserve :grinning:


#6

Florida’s Governor has just signed HB 687 into law, greatly reducing barriers to the use of utility poles by wireless access providers! :smiley:


#7

Does anyone have drawings of Mimosa equipment mounted to power poles? Our power company is requesting detailed drawings of what a typical installations would look like.

Thanks,
Rod