Based on information recently posted on the Radio Reference Georgia Forum by member Thunderbolt, Effingham and Chatham Counties have applied to put up a temporary SEGARREN site near the intersection of GA 21 and Goshen Rd. to fill in a SEGARRN coverage gap in the northwest portion of Chatham County; the frequencies used will be those 700 MHz frequencies already licensed to Chatham County and Savannah. The general idea is to utilize the temporary site for a period of approximately two years until Effingham County is able to secure enough funding to convert their current system over to SEGARRN. From Effingham County’s STA Request:
The long term intent of Effingham County, Chatham County and the City of Savannah is to add the Rincon Site to the Effingham County Simulcast Subsystem. At present, the Effingham Simulcast Subsystem is operating on the older radio system platform (v4.1). In order to improve coverage in the town of Rincon and surrounding areas of Effingham County and to improve coverage for the Savannah/Chatham Metro Police and other agencies in North West Chatham County either additional v4.1 based equipment would have to be purchased or new v7.7 equipment must be purchased. The purchase of all new v7.7 equipment operating on the Effingham Simulcast Subsystem is cost prohibitive at this time and purchase of additional near obsolete equipment does not make fiscal sense. Sufficient funds exist however, to purchase v7.7 equipment to place the Rincon Site in service as part of the Savannah/Chatham Simulcast Subsystem. Doing so allows Effingham County to purchase approximately 1/3 of the equipment necessary to .migrate WQCZ775 to operate as three v7.7 sites at a date to be determined. Effingham County has purchased the necessary equipment and is prepared to place the equipment in service upon approval of the STA. WQLZ568 and WQLZ569 are the Savannah/Chatham Simulcast Subsystem on the v7.7 infrastructure. Each license operates on channels in the 700MHz Public Safety Band. The channels are coordinated in the Region 10 Plan for Chatham County use. The Rincon site is located in Effingham County approximately 1/2 mile from the Chatham County line. The licensees are seeking a waiver to allow placement of the Chatham County coordinated frequencies at the Rincon Site in Effingham County and to allow FB2 operation at the Rincon site, FX1 operation at various Control stations in Effingham County, and MO operation within the 40dbu contour of the site on the licensed frequencies for the purpose Stated above. The intent of the licensees is for the Rincon Site, operating as part of the WQLZ568 and WQLZ569 simulcast subsystem, to be temporary until such a time that Effingham County is able to complete the upgrade of the two additional sites (currently operating on the old v4.1 technology under WQCZ775) to v7.X technology at which time WQCZ775, via license modification, would absorb the Rincon Site into the Simulcast Cell and the frequencies would be changed to those of WQCZ775. The expected time to complete the transition is less than two years.
Since the issue of WQLZ568 and WQLZ569, the licensees have built and placed into full operation 10 channels of the 21 total licensed at all sites listed on the licenses. 1800 subscribers currently have access to these channels in Chatham and Effingham Counties along with an additional 400 users in Bryan County. The addition of the Rincon Site will not, at this time, increase the available subscriber base but will significantly improve coverage in this important area of our community. As stated above, the Rincon Site will be placed in operation on the 10 channels currently built out by Savannah and Chatham County upon issue of the STA. Additional channels will be added to the Rincon site as Savannah and Chatham continue the build out of WQLZ568 and WQLZ569.