by Peter Yankowski Press Staff Ridgefield residents who rely on Verizon may have to wait a while longer for service around Ridgefield High School. Despite petitions online \u2014 and a Verizon Customer Service number published in The Press last year, on which a Verizon representative claimed residents could call to pressure the company to improve service \u2014 Verizon service in the north end of town has retained its reputation as a \u201cblackout zone.\u201d One resident, who wished to remain anonymous, told The Press the coverage was so bad she had asked to log into Ridgefield High School\u2019s wifi to patch a call through. \u201cVerizon is looking for ways to improve and expand our network coverage in ways that fit our business model,\u201d said Verizon representative David Weissman in an email Monday, Aug. 7. \u201cWe value the feedback from our customers and will continue to explore ways we can improve the network experience in the community.\u201d Several follow-up questions went unresponded. Rather than constructing their own cellular towers, most major carriers in the country tend to lease space on towers built by outside companies, which allows one tower to serve multiple carriers. But in the case of the Ridgebury cell tower, there is no guarantee that all the major carriers will lease space on a newly-built tower. Dick Aarons, the town\u2019s emergency management director, said that he had heard of no plans to add Verizon to the Ridgebury tower. He said that the town\u2019s emergency equipment on the tower remains operational. \u201cLike any cell call, the user needs \u2018bars\u2019,\u201d Aarons said. \u201cNo \u2018bars,\u2019 no contact. \u00a0If they do have bars and dial 911, a call from Ridgebury may be answered by Ridgefield [police] \u2014 or the New York State Police, wherever the cell system detects the strongest signal \u2026 any police agency that receives the call would forward it to Ridgefield police dispatch.\u201d First Selectman Rudy Marconi was a bit more forward. \u201cWe need to get Verizon on that tower,\u201d he said. \u201cThe Office of the First Selectman is working with Homeland Towers to come up with a solution.\u201d Marconi made construction of the new tower a priority several years ago, even proposing the town buy the land needed for a company to built a cell tower. The project was eventually undertaken by Danbury-based Homeland Towers. The Press reached out to Homeland Towers for comment on Verizon\u2019s slow response to leasing space at the site, but received no response at Press time. One resident, who was part of a change.org petition last summer to push Verizon to lease space on the tower, said she thinks \u201ceveryone has basically given up\u201d on the issue.