The monolithic tower that has stood half-built across from the Tenley Metro is finally beginning to come down, according to its owner.
American Tower Spokeswoman Lori Philbin said, "American Tower is working diligently to finalize the schedule for dismantling the Tenleytown tower." The company has fought the city for several years about the status of the tower, construction of which was halted approximately halfway when neighbors protested the size of the structure that sits adjacent to several others on Wisconsin Avenue, close to the highest elevation in the city.
The massive iron tower was being constructed around the historic Western Union tower, built by noted DC architect Leon Chatelain. The Western Union tower was intended to form part of a "radio triangle" of microwave radio-stations linking Washington, Pittsburgh, and New York, and was originally designed to serve as a relay point for the Wideband System and other national security communications systems. In conjunction with the City and through a series of lawsuits, the newer addition was stopped several years ago and has since sat unused.
Philbin added that, American Tower is, "...focused on removing the tower as expeditiously as possible while ensuring the safety of residents, contractors…and to ensure minimum disruption to businesses and vehicular and pedestrian traffic in the neighborhood."
No final date has been set for completion of the dismantling.