Lawsuit filed over AT&T boxes in San Francisco

Community groups in San Francisco filed a lawsuit Wednesday to top AT & T from installing 726 4-foot by 4-foot utility boxes.

The telecommunication company plans to install the boxes throughout San Francisco as it has done in other California cities to establish its new technology known as U-Verse, which would bring competition to cable provider Comcast.

The plan was approved by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, but now there is the backlash from the community groups, which are being led by San Francisco Beautiful, a nonprofit group fighting to preserve The City’s natural beauty.

The lawsuit argues AT & T must undergo an environmental review before installing the boxes. The Board of Supervisors had voted last month that the company did not have to do the study before moving forward.  Such a study is required under a state law known as the California Environmental Quality Act if a project is thought to have a significant impact on the environment. It would assess the impacts and recommend ways to mitigate them.

The lawsuit also requests that the court prevent AT & T from installing any utility boxes while the case is in the courts.

“We really don’t want to sue, but we are left no choice when the City refuses to uphold its own environmental codes and is about to give away our sidewalks for the benefit of a private company without any objective review,” Milo Hanke, past President of San Francisco Beautiful, said in a statement. “We are confident that an Environmental Impact Report will advance commonsense mitigation methods, such as placing the equipment on private property.”

jsabatini@sfexaminer.com

AT&TBay Area NewsGovernment & PoliticsPoliticsSan FranciscoUnder the Dome

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Those who stick around San Francisco on long holiday weekends can enjoy a slower pace, uncrowded streets and beloved institutions like cable cars. <ins>(Kevin Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
These empty San Francisco streets: A holiday dream

We’re here because we can be, and because we have nowhere else to be

The 2020 Census has concluded taking responses sooner than expected. (Courtesy photo)
What does California have to lose if undocumented immigrants are excluded from the census?

By Kim Bojórquez The Sacramento Bee If The U.S. Supreme Court rules… Continue reading

It’s disheartening to see that Bill Graham Civic’s marquee isn’t announcing upcoming concerts. (Screenshot/Bill Graham Civic Twitter)
A cruise through The City with the ghosts of rides past

I take my time and don’t even mind the occasional traffic jams

A ban on smoking or vaping in multi-unit buildings has drawn opposition from cannabis advocates, who say it would leave users with no legal place to consume a legal substance. (Shutterstock)
Cannabis group slams Yee’s proposed apartment smoking ban as ‘classist’

Legislation would impose fines of $1,000 a day on repeat violators

The most dangerous behaviors by drivers include failing to yield right-of-way at crosswalks, unsafe speeding and failing to stop at red lights or stop signs. <ins>(Ekevara Kitpowsong/Special to S.F. Examiner)</ins>

Most Read