Mobile fifth-generation (“5G”) wireless communications systems are the next upgrade of wireless technology, which the wireless industry promises will provide faster broadband speeds, greater capacity and better reliability. To deploy this technology, the industry will use new infrastructure referred to as “small cell” or “small wireless facilities.” Small cells collect and target signals a short distance from one another and, therefore, require collocating small wireless facilities closer to one another than has been the case with 3G and 4G wireless technology.
This has led the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) to issue a Declaratory Ruling, Report and Order – FCC 18-133A1 – titled “Accelerating Wireless Broadband Deployment by Removing Barriers to Infrastructure Development” (the “2018 Report and Order”). Adopted on September 26, 2018, the 2018 Report and Order went into effect on January 14, 2019, with the stated purpose of facilitating the deployment of 5G technology. According to the FCC, eighty percent of 5G deployments will involve densely located small wireless facilities, in contrast to the more spread out and taller towers and structures supporting 3G and 4G cell antennas. The 2018 Report and Order will affect all New Jersey municipalities, and should be understood by all local zoning and planning officials, departments and boards. This article will lay out the basics of the 2018 Report and Order and offer a few recommendations for consideration.
For the full article click here: FCC 2018 Report and Order re: Small Wireless Facilities