Height is not always an advantage. The Civic Centre, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi’s (MCD) swank new office building, may be — at 112 metres — the tallest highrise in the city, but if you step inside, you’ll find it near impossible to use your mobile phone.
The problem is so acute that the MCD has decided to install an electronic device on each of its 28 floors to improve reception. Mobile signals will be picked up by an antenna outside the building, amplified and transmitted to another antenna inside, from which cellphones in the building can pick it up.
The Centre doesn’t get signal because it is taller than all the mobile towers around it. Signals travel in straight horizontal lines, and when towers are at a lower height than a particular structure, the structure will not catch them.
“We have had talks with a number of operators. The system will be in place by end June,” said an MCD official.
Interestingly, the Civic Centre does receive mobile signals emanating from the hill state of neighbouring Uttarakhand, where mobile towers stand at heights much higher than the Centre.