NORTH ADAMS -- Improved and expanded cell service, including 4G capability, will soon be coming to parts of the city.
Planning Board members approved at their meeting Monday night a request for a special permit to Verizon Wireless for new and updated antennas on its array on the Mohawk Trail (Route 2) near the Eastern Summit.
The application filed with the city clerk states Verizon will install five new antennas on a 120-foot tower owned by Berkshire Broadcasting Co. The cell service provider currently has 10 antennas on the tower.
"The addition of five antenna panels will help Verizon Wireless achieve a higher level of service for its customers by adding equipment having the latest wireless technology," the application states.
In addition, four existing antennas on the array will be replaced with updated ones.
"Because the antennas will be installed at the same level as the existing antennas, there will be no discernible visual impact created by the installation on the surrounding community," the application states. "Also there are no inhabited structures within at least 500 feet of the tower."
Verizon has leased space on the tower since 1990. The property site, located off of the Mohawk Trail, is also owned by Berkshire Broadcasting.
In other business, members unanimously approved a special permit for The Cages at the Mill, an indoor, multi-purpose sports training facility in the Blackinton Mill at 1470 Massachusetts Ave.
The application was submitted by Ken Livingstone, owner of Livingstone Speed Academy, a sports performance training company in Williamstown.
Livingstone said the facility will allow local athletes to participate in hitting and pitching lessons for baseball and softball, as well as lacrosse and soccer.
The 4,500-square-foot space will feature ceilings up to 14 feet at its highest point and Astroturf surfaces, he said.
Members also approved special permits for:
* Bond Auto Parts, to be located in the former Tire Warehouse building at 922 Curran Highway (Route 8.) The existing building will remain and have minor interior and exterior alterations. According to the permit application, the company, out of Barre, Vt., is "the 24th largest chain in America with stores located Vermont, New Hampshire, New York and Massachusetts."
* Steepleview Realty, which will move into a space at 53 Main St. from its current location in a suite at 85 Main St. Owner Jennifer Segala said decorative changes will be made to the interior, with no structural changes planned.
* 599 Guys at 40 Eagle St. According to the application, the business will specialize in custom screen printing, embroidery and vinyl graphics, as well as repairing and selling electronics and related items.
To reach Edward Damon,