City of McKinney looks into 5G’s effects on public health following safety concerns from residents


The topic of incorporating new smart technology in McKinney has surfaced over the last few months, and residents have mixed emotions.

McKinney City Council began discussions on implementing fifth-generation wireless technology during a work session April 22.

This technology, called 5G, is one of the fastest wireless communication systems available, according to a presentation given during the April work session. It would allow for the adoption of new industries, including autonomous vehicles, smart communities, higher data transfer rates and new industrial advancement.

Better wireless technology would help the city attract future developments to the area, Gary Graham, director of engineering for the city of McKinney, said at the work session.

Several residents have come forward at various City Council meetings since April to express concerns about 5G and its potentially harmful side effects.

In an effort to further discussions on 5G implementation, the McKinney Economic Development Corp. hired Technology & Infrastructure Specialist Mike DePaola last month.

DePaola said he plans to conduct “unbiased research” regarding 5G implementation and its effects on residents’ health, during an Aug. 20 MEDC meeting.

In order to be transparent with residents, DePaola said he will make his findings, no matter the results, accessible to the community.

“We don’t want to hone in on specific studies that say, ‘5G is great, smart cities are great’ … We want to present the whole range of topics, and we want to allow citizens and business owners to have access to what we are making decisions off of,” DePaola said.

Guiding principles for 5G implementation were adopted by the city during a May 21 City Council meeting.

“The two [principles]we are going to focus on in this plan are going to be enhancing the city’s economic development programs and … to ensure the health and safety of residents, guests and visitors in the city of McKinney,” DePaola said.

City staff is specifically looking to implement 5G technology along the SH 121 corridor, according to previous discussions.

This 5G technology, if approved, would be built onto a network of small cell poles, according to a presentation at the April meeting. Cellular providers are anticipated to have their own 5G networks, but they will need to partner with the city to install necessary equipment in high-demand areas.

Nothing has been built in McKinney yet in regard to 5G, DePaola said, but the city’s next steps include hiring a wireless implementation consultant followed by a public forum to engage with residents and business owners.

Dates have not been set at this time but are expected to be available in the next few months.

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  1. Ionizing Radiation… Think X-rays. 5G does not create ionizing radiation. These are the same people who believe vaccines cause autism. So, the guy they hired to write a paper about 5g radiation which will say the exact same thing that the science community has stated that 5g is perfectly safe (for years and years) and it will NOT be enough to satisfy the loony birds.

    Ionizing radiation is definitely bad for you if you are exposed to it for long periods. 5G is non-ionizing like all existing cell and wifi radiation.

    Unfortunately the city council decided to spend our tax money to satiate these nutters which will generate the exact same data as ALL other previous studies that ALL come to the same conclusion, but it wont be enough for the nutters.

    Next time just ignore them. (but we know they wont because these nutters vote).

    • Absolutely absurd that the city council jumps at a few babbling people rambling on about a subject they have no knowledge in, when factual scientific proven information is readily available to dispute these false claims. Yet, the city allows a concrete plant to open up yards from subdivisions that spews harmful dust all over the place.

      On another note, more people are harmed by the broken and missing SIDEWALKS throughout the Historic District than a cellular service has ever caused!! Just yesterday I saw a little girl trip and fall, busting her face open, because the sidewalk was sticking up 6 inches!

      Get your crap together, McKinney!!!!

  2. Headline mentions 5g effect on public health following safety concerns. Article mentions nothing of the sort. What’s the deal here? Clickbait?

  3. President said 2 days ago. No Huawei ! This means no 5G unless we create our own. Even if you heard it on main stream. He said. He never said any partial Huawei period. Just a bunch of Thieving in the city & how to line pockets. Same ole, same ole. Go figure

  4. Sometimes politics and science don’t mix very well and politics takes precedence to science. Keep in mind that they are elected officials and elections are always around the corner. The problem is that some people base their opinions on non-factual considerations, suspicions, paranoid, and other emotional factors. the last few years a small group of locals have been worked up over the water quality in Plano. Nothing, repeat, nothing will change their minds I imagine.

    Refuting these beliefs is just about impossible. Just imagine the controversies over the centuries when Columbus returned, electricity was invented, automobiles replaced horses, concrete replaced wood, the advent of air travel, electronics, computers and now AI. Human emotions can have a very difficult time keeping pace with the rapid changes in society. 10-15 years ago, the ruckus was over high tension power lines.

  5. I live in the UK and the subject of “radio frequency (RF) radiation” has also come up here.
    If you want professional opinions on 5g health risks I would suggest that you take a look at: –
    There are both healthcare risks and changes to local areas by way of masts as 5g needs them every 100 metres or so. We currently have WIMAX internet delivery which can be upgrated to 100mbps (or 4g) instead of the problematic 5g fairly quickly – without the risks.

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Emily Davis
Emily graduated from Sam Houston State University with a degree in multi-platform journalism and a minor in criminal justice in Spring 2018. During her studies, Emily worked as an editor and reporter at The Houstonian, SHSU's local newspaper. Upon graduation, she began an editorial internship at Community Impact Newspaper in DFW, where she was then hired as Community Impact's first McKinney reporter in August. Three fun facts about Emily: 1.) She is a lover of mystery novels, movies, TV shows and podcasts. 2.) She has an 11-year-old, 3-pound Pomeranian. 3.) She loves lacrosse, and was captain and then coach of her high school team.
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