River Project has selected the Loop
101-Ray Road route for its planned
69-kilovolt power line; now Chandler and
Tempe officials are negotiating
separately with the utility to minimize
the impact on their residents.
officials are talking with SRP about two
issues: Minimizing the impact on the
Cottonwoods area at Guadalupe and Price
roads; and burying the line on the north
side of the Price-Warner intersection
rather than farther south.
Chandler, the discussion focuses on how
to string the new high-tension lines
along Ray Road where there already are
power lines on wooden poles.
Tempe City Council has told its staff,
“Do not hang power lines adjacent to
residential development,” said Jeff
Kulaga, assistant city manager.
said the city is discussing with SRP how
to add the new line to existing poles at
Guadalupe and Price roads without
impacting the Cottonwoods area on the
southwest corner or any other
solution may be to erect new power poles
diagonally across the Guadalupe-Price
intersection to keep the 69-kV line as
far as possible from Cottonwoods, he
plans to string the line on new poles
along the Price Road-Loop 101 frontage
area south from Guadalupe Road to Warner
Road, then bury the line south of Warner
almost to Ray Road.
negotiating with SRP to bury the power
line on the north side of Warner Road to
keep it as far as possible from
residences, Kulaga said.
issues are “a matter of seeing if it is
feasible from an engineering standpoint
and also what’s the cost,” Kulaga said.
Chandler, meanwhile, is talking to SRP
about how to string the new 69-kV line
along the north side of Ray Road from
Price to McClintock Drive.
option being considered is replacing the
existing wood poles with metal poles
that are taller but stronger so they can
be spaced farther apart, Chandler Public
Works Director Bryan Patterson said.
Patterson said there are 19 wood poles
along Ray Road today between Loop 101
and McClintock that could be replaced by
approximately 14 or 15 metal poles, he
Chandler and Tempe are planning to use
“aesthetics funds” provided by SRP to
bury the high-voltage line near
residential areas along southbound Price
Road on the west side of Loop 101
between Warner and Ray roads.
Chandler’s share of the cost to bury the
portion of the power line inside its
city limits is estimated at $1.25
million, according to Patterson.
also will use about $895,000 in SRP
“aesthetics fund” money to bury the
power line for about one-quarter mile
along McClintock north of Ray Road to
connect to the existing Houston
substation there, he said.
brings Chandler’s estimated investment
in burying the power line to
approximately $2.15 million.
investment to bury the controversial
power line along Loop 101 has not been
1989, Salt River Project has allocated a
small portion of its construction budget
to an “aesthetics fund” that communities
can use to hide or bury unsightly
utility equipment. Each community
receives an annual allocation based on
how much work SRP has planned inside
the high-voltage Hanger-Houston power
line will tap about two years’ worth of
Chandler’s “aesthetics fund”
allocations, according to Patterson.
meanwhile, has spent more than $3
million since the mid-1990s burying
smaller power lines along McClintock
Drive north of the Houston substation
and on other streets in the area, Kulaga
announced on Dec. 23 that it had
selected the Loop 101-Ray Road option,
a.k.a. “Option F” on the utility’s route
spokesman Scott Harelson said at the
time that construction will take
“probably close to five months.”
expects demand for electricity to exceed
capacity by mid-2007 in the area is
bounded roughly by Baseline Road to the
north, Pecos Road to the south, Cooper
Road to the east and Rural Road to the
west. The new line through the Kyrene
Corridor is needed to avoid overloading
existing power lines in that area,
utility spokesmen say.
power line will connect the Hanger
substation at Guadalupe Road and the
Loop 101 freeway with the Houston
Substation on McClintock Road, north of
Ray Road. Linking these two substations
will effectively tie together all of the
substations in that portion of the SRP
power system to help ensure reliability.
Mayor Boyd Dunn has called for a third
public meeting to discuss the SRP
proposal after two “open house” meetings
in late 2005 created more anger than
understanding among residents of south
Tempe and west Chandler.
Dunn told reporters in December that he
still anticipates a third meeting, but
no meeting has been scheduled and city
officials and SRP’s Harelson agree there
is little left to discuss other than
details of the project.