MANSFIELD -- Georgia Transmission Corporation is moving forward with plans to build a substation and run a transmission line through the city of Mansfield.
Work on a substation near the intersection of Mill Pond Road and Ga. Highway 11 began last week, according to GTC Public Affairs Director Jeannine K. Haynes. Grading activities are scheduled to be complete by early June and construction of the substation will begin at that time and be completed by December, Haynes said.
Clearing for the transmission line will begin in mid-August and the line will be ready for service in December, she said.
"To date we have purchased 18 of the 24 easements that are needed for the transmission line. We are working diligently to reach an agreement on the six remaining easements. If necessary we will begin court action in mid-May. This doesn't mean that we stop talking or negotiating for the easements. It simply means that we are running out of time ... the project needs to be complete by December of this year because the electric demand peaks during the cold winter months in this area," Haynes said in an email.
The city of Mansfield hired Donald C. Evans Jr., an attorney with Vaughn and Evans LLC law firm based in Cartersville, to represent its interests in the project, which both city officials and residents have strongly opposed.
Evans could not be reached for comment Friday. Mansfield Mayor Estona Middlebrooks said, "We're still in a legal battle," but declined to comment further.
GTC's plans in Mansfield involve erecting large concrete poles and running power lines through the back streets of the town to the substation. The lines will not go through the center of town, but the poles will run between houses. According to GTC, the transmission lines will require easements from 25 to 125 feet wide, including the right to cut and remove dead or diseased trees within 10 to 30 feet of the right of way.
The new transmission line is scheduled to be in service by summer 2013.