In the last few years, wireless data traffic has increased exponentially. People are no longer only accessing the Internet at home or in the office, they are doing it wherever they are from their mobile device. Telecommunication carriers have come up with innovative ways to increase their network capacity. One solution is through the use of small cells. Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) are another solution used to address the need for increased coverage and capacity of wireless networks.
DAS are typically associated with large facilities and venues that may have known peak usage (i.e., a sporting event or concert) as the systems are designed to address the potential for interference from building materials of the structure itself, as well as, simultaneous data usage from a large number of people in a concentrated area. Thus DAS is a benefit to both the wireless carriers using the system, as well as, the venue owners in providing better service to smartphone users at these locations.
In 2016, G2 has provided environmental due diligence services in the form of Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ESA), Phase II ESAs, and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Reviews to its telecommunication clients proposing to install DAS at two venues in the greater Chicagoland area.
Our Phase I ESA for one of the projects found the site was utilized for heavy industrial purposes dating back to the 1950’s prior to the redevelopment of the parcel as a sporting venue in the early 2000’s. At least 16 underground storage tanks with two documented leaking incidents were associated with the historical industrial site within the overall property. However, given the limited nature of the client’s proposed work below grade, we were able to tailor our scope of work for soil testing associated with the Phase II ESA to address only the areas to be impacted by the proposed telecommunications site development and to address the necessary parameters to satisfy the Illinois EPA’s Clean Construction and Demolition Debris requirements. The soil testing results were favorable and our client was able to proceed toward development of the site with no delays or extra costs incurred.