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Columbia electric transmission line open house

Around 150 people attended the open house for the Columbia Electric Transmission Line project.

It was held Wednesday night at Rock Bridge High School. Industry experts were available to answer any questions or concerns from those affected along the route.

Columbia Water and Light says it is a multi-phased project that includes adding a substation and transmission lines.

The transmission line route is in south Columbia along Scott Boulevard, Vawter School Road, Nifong Boulevard and Grindstone Parkway.

The project has three phases and is expected to take about 5 years to complete. Construction of the overhead transmission lines isn’t expected to start until 2017.

Officials with Columbia Water and Light say the transmission lines are overhead because it’s carrying a higher voltage, making it more expensive to bury underground.

People who attended Wednesday’s open house were given a comment form to express their concerns and opinions about the proposed placements of the poles. Columbia Water and Light says they will also accept public comments online for the next two weeks.

There were some concerns about the route being near Mill Creek Elementary School. Connie Kacprowicz with Columbia Water and Light tells us the route is about 300 feet away from where the school is located and that the magnetic fields drop off significantly.

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