Natural gas pipeline to be built through county
by Wes Mayer
Plans are under way to build a natural gas pipeline extension through northwest Georgia, and Cowetas who discovered their property may be affected by the construction project attended an open house Monday at the Newnan Centre.
The pipeline, the Dalton Expansion Project, is planned to branch from the already existing Transco Pipeline that runs through Coweta County. The Dalton pipeline is planned to begin at Transco Station 115, which is roughly in mid-western Coweta, and head north to Murray County, where it will end. The entire pipeline is planned to be 106 miles long, and 6.3 of these miles will be through northwest Coweta County.
However, there are still numerous local residents who have learned their property is in the path of this proposed pipeline. To meet with these residents and discuss the project, Williams, the company behind the pipeline’s construction, held a public forum for Coweta residents from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Newnan Centre.
“Nothing is written in stone yet,” said Maria Palacios, one of the communication specialists with Williams. “We just want to make sure we answer everyone’s questions, address their problems, and get as much info as we can.”
Palacios said the pipeline project has a 600-foot study corridor – meaning there is some room to move construction, if needed. The project is only in its middle stages where Williams and FERC – the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission – are meeting with residents to hear their opinions. After this, the project will still need to be certified by FERC before construction begins.
On Monday, Williams representatives invited residents to speak to numerous construction and engineering professionals, and attendees viewed maps of the proposed pipeline’s route.
Jack Camp, who lives on Handy Road, said the proposed pipeline is running along an entire length of his property, and he had a few issues.
“At this point, I’m just concerned about the price they will give me,” Camp said, “and I’d rather there be no pipeline at all. There are also the consequential damages, and I’m worried about the cost of my other land.”
Camp added he is worried that when people see the natural gas pipeline markers coming out of the ground, they will assume it is public property and ride their dirt bikes and four-wheelers along the land.
Ian Goldenberg, who lives farther north on Wagers Mill Road, also had some concerns.
“I’m trying to see the big picture,” he said. “Obviously it is going to be good in the long run, but first and foremost, I’m concerned about my family’s safety. I want to make sure safety comes first, and it is done as it should be done.”
Goldenberg is also worried the pipeline will affect his property value.
The Dalton Expansion is estimated to bring 448,000 dekatherms of natural gas to Georgia residents every day – providing daily needed gas to around 2 million homes, according to Williams’ website. If certified by FERC, the proposed construction date is the middle of 2016, with the pipeline in service by 2017.