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Park weighs cellular service proposals at Mount Rainier

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Image taken 8/20/16. Glenn Cummings

MOUNT RAINIER NATIONAL PARK, Wash. (AP) — Two cellphone carriers have applied for permits to install telecommunications equipment on the main visitor building at Mount Rainier National Park.

Park officials say Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile are proposing to co-locate antennas on the outside of Jackson Visitor Center, located at the Paradise area of the park.

Park spokeswoman Karen Thompson says the antennas will be mounted below the roof of the building and behind a fiberglass panel that would match the exterior wood siding. No towers would be built.

Cellphone service is spotty at Paradise, which is at about 5,400-feet and one of most heavily used areas of the park.

The companies have applied for right-of-way permits to provide year-round service to its customers.

The park says it’s required by federal law to consider all telecommunications proposals on park lands. The agency is accepting public comments through Dec. 12.