OTTUMWA — Ottumwa’s newest 250-foot structure was constructed in just more than four hours.
Crews from Hi-Tech Towers, of Gibson City, Ill., began constructing the new communications tower Tuesday morning at its site on Ottumwa Street west of Iowa Highway 149.
They had planned to begin assembling the tower after Memorial Day, but rain and flooding put the project on hold yet again. Poor weather has caused multiple delays this spring since the concrete was laid in January.
Crews also moved the new equipment shelter from the Secondary Roads Department on Mill Street to the tower site. The building will hold all 911 communications equipment, including different radio frequencies and repeaters. The shelter was manufactured in Louisiana and has been sitting in Secondary Roads for weeks waiting to be moved.
The new tower is 50 feet taller than the other four towers at the site and will hold the antennas for 911, city, county and ORMICS.
These antennas currently sit atop St. Joseph Hospital, which is slated for demolition. Asbestos abatement and removal of the 16 active and non-active antennas must happen before demolition can begin.