Local writer Anne Herbert, famous for coining the phrase “practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty,” recently announced on her blog:
The closer I live to Sutro Tower, the more I think it isn’t dangerous.
O.K. then. But who says Sutro Tower is dangerous? Well, for starters, the people who live around it in the Twin Peaks area, in small neighborhoods like Clarendon Heights and Midtown Terrace. Among other things, they worry about EMF radiation. They worry that the tower might fall down.
Sutro Tower at night under a shooting star. Looks safe enough:
But there’s not much they can do about it. The time to do something would have been back in the 1960′s when it was being planned.
So, let’s take a trip down Memory Lane and check out this 35-year-old piece from Stephen R. Barnett. He alleged:
…the project was cloaked from public view by a media blackout, a conspiracy of silence hatched by the TV stations that own the tower and joined by the Chronicle and Examiner.
Them’s fighting words, don’t you think? You might not agree with his conspiratorial tone, but we all can appreciate little nuggets such as:
“It is ridiculous to assume the FCC will require the entire tower to be painted with alternate stripes of white and orange.” Wheat declared. It “will doubtless be painted a neutral color consistent with the surroundings,” he assured the Supervisors.
As you can see, it’s white and orange to keep the FAA happy. Note the newish 125-foot-long, 10-ton auxiliary antenna mounted vertically
More recently, a movement was afoot to prevent the tower from going digital, but that didn’t work out.
There are updates for the digital future slated and there’s a lot of life left in this structure, so it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.
The sun always shines on TV.