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Mount Pleasant, South Carolina–The SCE&G “proposed” power lines are concerning residents residing in the following subdivisions who will be impacted: Hamlin Plantation, Raven’s Run, Six Mile and Hamlin Park. The power company indicates they need to install new 115,000 volt trasmission lines to better serve the town of Mount Pleasant’s residents. The installation of these lines including a 70 ft tall steel tower might have a huge impact on the resale value of homes. In addition, residents are also concerned about possible health effects.

According to the article by Prentiss Findlay with the Post and Courier, the spokesman for SCE&G said the project is critical since demand for power has increased by 80% since 1998. The following is additional information taken from the article published:

“There is more than one proposed route for the power line; the path that has drawn the most opposition runs near wetlands south of the Isle of Palms Connector up to Hamlin Plantation. Hamlin Plantation residents said the line belongs in a commercial area such as along U.S. Highway 17 or Hungryneck Boulevard, both options under consideration by SCE&G.

If constructed through Hamlin Plantation, the transmission line and its supporting towers would go on an existing easement about a quarter-mile from the entrance to the subdivision where power distribution lines are buried.

‘Everybody who entered Hamlin Plantation would see them. It would be a fairly substantial sight impact,’ said resident Mark Fava.

Hamlin Plantation resident Carole Nicolini said many letters and e-mails have been sent to Mount Pleasant officials and SCE&G by residents of the

subdivision who object to the transmission line being routed through their neighborhood. Reasons for their opposition include destruction of wetlands and wildlife habitat, dangers to life and property during storms and hurricanes and ‘unsightly 70-foot towers strung through new residential properties like giant clotheslines,’ Nicolini said in an e-mail.

A total of 575 residents of Hamlin Plantation, Raven’s Run, Hamlin Park and the Six Mile community have signed a petition to SCE&G, Mount Pleasant and Charleston County on behalf of Hamlin Coastal Communities Preservation Group expressing their concern about the new transmission line. ‘Please reject routes through established, historical or heavily populated residential communities, tree-line scenic roads and the coastal marsh,’ the petition reads.

Discussion of the new transmission route line is on the agenda for the Mount Pleasant Town Council Finance Committee meeting today. SCE&G has held two community hearings on the route of the line. Turner said the utility will make a decision on where to put the line this month.

Mount Pleasant draws power from a 115,000-volt line that feeds the Hamlin substation on Porchers Bluff road near U.S. 17, and a 115,000-volt line that runs from near Interstate 526 and U.S. 17 down toward Isle of Palms. The new 115,000-volt transmission line will connect those two existing 115,000-volt lines and increase the ability of SCE&G to move high-voltage power quickly and safely, the utility said.

‘This new line will increase overall reliability in the area and allow us to move large blocks of power between several substations during periods of high usage,’ Turner said in a letter to residents.

The utility has proposed more than three dozen options for connecting the existing 115,000-volt lines with the new 115,000-volt line. U.S. 17, Hungry Neck Boulevard, Rifle Range Road and near Hamlin Sound are the main proposed routes for the new transmission line. A number of different possible connections between those proposed routes results in a total of 38 possible ways for routing 115,000 volts on the new, four-mile-long transmission line.

‘It’s all about improving reliability and building redundancy in your system,’ Turner said.

Turner said SCE&G contractor Facilities Planning & Siting of Charlotte is studying the possible routes for the transmission line. A spokesman for the company said it provides data and cost estimates for the different line routes to the SCE&G board that the utility uses to make its decision on where to place the line. Construction of the new transmission line is scheduled to be completed in early 2008.”

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