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Tenants hit roof over cell antennas

New York Daily News

It seems the daily is pretty hard boiled over 706 Eastern Parkway (second article in 2 days)

A Brooklyn landlord could be forced to pull the plug on some of the lucrative cell phone antennas on his building as activists charged yesterday the devices could be health hazards.

City officials said yesterday the maze of antennas and other equipment atop 706 Eastern Parkway in Crown Heights appeared to far exceed allowable limits after the Daily News detailed tenants’ health fears.

“The irresponsible siting of cell phone towers has reached epidemic proportions,” said Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. (D-Queens) at a City Hall press conference calling for stricter regulations. “We don’t know enough to allow this to happen.”

Federal officials and cell phone companies insist the technology is safe and radiation from antennas is far below established public exposure limits.

But critics charge the long-term health effects of radiation, even low levels, are not known.

The antennas can earn landlords who rent out roof space to cell companies up to $20,000 a month, said industry critic Assemblyman Michael Gianaris (D-Queens).

Parents protested yesterday outside a Flushing parochial school and church that earns nearly $4,700 a month for 23 antennas on its roof.

St. Mel’s pastor, the Rev. Christopher Turczany, said he signed the contracts to help the struggling church and school “make payroll,” but agreed to cancel the deals when he learned of parents’ concerns.

A spokesman for T-Mobile, which has six antennas atop St. Mel’s, said the company won’t remove them despite parent protests.

Panicked residents of the Eastern Parkway building have been complaining of dizziness, fatigue and other ailments at the building since the bulk of the antennas went up in the fall.

City code allows cell phone equipment to occupy up 400 square feet of space, or 5% of a building’s roof, while a preliminary inspection of the Crown Heights building showed the antennas take up about 600 square feet there.

The owner, Serhof Realty Corp. on Long Island, has contracts with three different cell phone companies, residents said.

“If there’s a violation, then we’ll do what we have to do,” said a man who answered the phone at Serhof’s Great Neck office.


  • 2. toishav wrote:

    This building is owned by the son-in-law of the previous owner OBM who was said to be an extremely nice person and a big ba’al tzedaka. His son-in-law is not Lubavitch. The present owner has a record of mistreating his customers. Many people think that 706 is an exclusive building. It may have been once, but today it is a bug/mice infested unkept building where the owner threatens to and often does take action against tenants who complain about things that are not to his liking. Sort of like a mafia. The main problem though is that these cell towers are very dangerous. They are a hazard for a few hundred feet around the building. The waves from these towers hit Oholei Torah, 770, the Jewish Children’s Museum, all residents in that area, and anyone walking by. Using a cell phone in this area aggravates the already present danger. There is alot of research on this. Check it out. There are also cell towers on a building on Empire corner Brooklyn next to Bais Rivkah and another building with tons of towers on Eastern Parkway corner Troy (on the side closer to Lincoln). THIS AFFECTS ALL OF US. We need to do something about it!!!! In the meantime, DO NOT RENT an apartment in/near 706 Eastern Parkway or any other building with cell towers on it. May we hear good news.

  • 3. anonymous 3 wrote:

    toishav wrote:
    "The main problem though is that these cell towers are very dangerous. They are a hazard for a few hundred feet around the building."
    "There is alot of research on this. Check it out."

    you dont know what you’re talking about.
    the only thing the real research shows is that there’s not enough conclusive evidence either way.
    i’m not saying that they’re not dangerous. I’m saying i dont know. and you dont know either.
    chances are there it is more dangerous to talk on your cell phone (without a headset) than to be in oholei torah.

    also, bear in mind that the reason those towers are there are for you to have cell phone service.

  • 4. Rosenfel wrote:

    according to city regulations this bulding cannot have the towers becouse of the school acros the street .

    but rabbi rosenfeld is getting some payoff not to complain.

  • 5. yossel wrote:

    yesterday morning on shabbes thy ware bringing more fences to secure the roof so nobody can see what goes on on the roof

  • 6. Crown Heights Safety wrote:

    Is anybody contacting NYCC Council Member Letitia James? She attended a 706 Eastern Parkway tenants meeting on this issue and wants to help. If you want her to work on a new law, call Yankel in her office at (718)260-9191.

    Also call NYS Senator Carl Andrews and NYS Assemblyman Karim Camara because they can support Asssemblyman Mike Gianaris on his state legislation.

  • 7. from:toishav to:anonymous 3 and everyone wrote:

    anonymous 3 wrote:"you dont know what you’re talking about. the only thing the real research shows is that there’s not enough conclusive evidence either way."

    First of all I happen to have done extensive research on this topic AND THERE IS CONCLUSIVE EVIDENCE!!!!!! Believe me I wish that the evidence was more positive. The radiation from these towers have been proven to cause/accelerate the rate of, lo aleinu, life threatening diseases. They can cause severe headaches, memory loss, nausea, infertility, chas vesholom, among other things. One study showed brain scans of individuals who were exposed to LESS THAN AN HOUR of cell tower radiation: Young children and the elderly showed the biggest deviation from normal/healthy brain activity. In California, Israel and some European countries, it is illegal to place cell towers within a feet hundred feet of an educational institution. Did you know that when cigarettes came out everyone thought/convinced themselves that it was ok. What is your problem? Do you need to wait some more years for statistics about damage that can’t be repaired or can only be repaired at a painful cost. I really cannot understand you, if there is even the slightest suspicion that water may be poisoned, for example, people are told to STOP drinking it IMMEDIATELY AND NOT to wait around to see if anyone, lo aleinu, gets sick or worse from it before telling people to stop drinking from it.

    "also, bear in mind that the reason those towers are there are for you to have cell phone service."

    Really, what is up with you? What kind of statement is that? Is our health more important or is using cell phones more important? You know what they say about speeding while driving: It’s better to be the person that is late than, chas vesholom, the person OF LATE… The same is true about this situation: What good is excellent cell reception if people may G-D forbid not be able to use because they are sick or worse. Would you sell off your family if you got a good deal? The health of everyone in our community must come before anything else. GO learn this fundamental idea from Shulchan Aruch. Let’s not wait to become statistics!!!! All the best :-)

  • 8. fisher wrote:

    Its time that all residents in 706 stop paying rent until the landlord gets the message. I dont know what is taking so long for the people in 706 to take action. Stop paying the rent and you will see how fast those cell towers come down. Do it now. By the way fisher has Cell Towers on his building as well. 440 brooklyn ave. as well as sydney hirth from hirth real estate at 441 Brooklyn ave. this is all right next to Beis Rivkah. its time for people to get involved and stop this danger.

  • 10. resident wrote:

    Where is the vad hakahal. i think it should be first on their agenda. Both the boys school and the girl school have a huge amount of waves from these towers and parent need to know about it as well as do something about it. I think its teribble when you have these so called "Jewish" landlords who dont give a dam about their fellow jews. Its a chilul hashem.

    where are the administrators of the school why arent they screaming and leting the comunity know whats going on around these schools? is it only tuition that they care about? how selfish could they be, accepting kickbacks from these low life landlords!!!!!!!

  • 11. anonymous 3 wrote:

    1. as i already said, I am not saying there is no danger all i’m saying is that i dont know. (and i dont think you do either)

    2. you claim there is conclusive evidence, can you post links to these studies so we can all see the evidence?

    3. are these real studies by reputable independent researchers? (i dont mean to insult your intelligence here, its just that this brings to mind something i saw a couple of years ago put out by the enviromentalist wackos trying to scare us into closing down the indian point nuclear reactor. they gave all kinds of misinformation and quoted "studies" as well. so i’m usualy very wary of such things untill i see the facts)

    do whatever these studies say apply to this situation? i’m sure there are many factors that need to be considered. (e.g. where were the the test subjects in relation to the antennas? where they directly in front of it? how far away? are the radio waves focused at all (i.e. away from the building) or they going in all directions? (straight down into the building) does the roof offer any sort of protection from the radiation? how does this dose of radiation compare to what you get from talking on a cellphone without a headset?)

    4. you bring an analogy from cigarettes. these two cannot be compared. at the time we didnt know much about cigarettes and their side affects. radiation on the other hand we know ALOT about. radiation is probably the most researched and most regulated dangerous "substance" there is. even so, most people dont much about radiation, all they know is thats its dangerous and they’re scared of it because of that.
    take an x-ray at the dentist as an example. the tech puts this lead vest on you before taking the x-ray. have you ever wondered what the vest actualy does? i’ll tell you what it does: nothing. its purely psychological, people want to feel safe. there is a very focused beam of radiation coming from the camera, any scattered radiation that might hit your chest etc. is so minimal it doesnt do anything. (in fact, you’ll have more scattered radiation going down there IN your body, it bouces around in there off the teeth and bones etc.)
    in other words radiation (in the small measured doses we’re used to) is not quite as scary & dangerous as everybody seems to think.

    5. as for my previous statement: "also, bear in mind that the reason those towers are there are for you to have cell phone service."

    my point was that what you seem to be asking for is an end to all cell phones. (if you cant have any towers nobody has service=nobody has phones)
    i’m not saying that 23 antennas on 1 building is not too much (read: too dangerous) i’m just saying that things are not as clear cut as you say. if we want to have cell phones there need to be towers somewhere (obviously they dont need to all be on the same building)

    if you want to abolish all cell phone use you need to have some very convincing evidence, something more then "i think there may be poison in the water"

  • 12. toishav wrote:

    resident wrote:"accepting kickbacks from these low life landlords!!!!!!!"
    Do you know this for sure. This is a pretty serious accusation. If you are not 100% sure, then I don’t think you should accuse these individuals of taking bribes" They definitely could be doing more to fight these towers.

  • 13. Anonymous wrote:

    The whole building is a case of institutionalized corruption. Let’s not forget about the evil super and his thieving family….
    On the other hand, he’s only a tool of management. If they really cared, they would maintain the property and not let it deteriorate so badly.


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