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REMINDER: Energize Eastside Community Advisory Group meeting scheduled for TONIGHT in Renton

The potential routes for the Energize Eastside project. - Courtesy image
The potential routes for the Energize Eastside project.
— image credit: Courtesy image

This article has been corrected. Wednesday's meeting is the final meeting of the summer, not the group;s final meeting as originally reported. Additional Community Advisory Group meetings are scheduled for October.

A meeting of the Energize Eastside Community Advisory Group is scheduled for Wednesday at Renton Technical College.

The group, made up of residents from the communities affected by Puget Sound Energy's plans to upgrade transmission lines, was created to discuss the pros and cons of the possible routes through Renton and other communities.

At the meeting, the group will work to narrow the possible routes from 18 to a smaller number.

After tomorrow's meeting, PSE will prepare for a round of open houses in September designed to be a chance to share the work the advisory group has done to date, and gather feedback from the public on the route options.

The advisory group will meet again in October to review the feedback from the public meetings and work to recommend a preferred route or routes. Accordng to PSE, another round of open houses will take place likely in November to share and gather feedback on the advisory group’s recommended route or routes.

Then, the advisory group will meet again to review public feedback from the open houses and finalize the group’s route recommendation.

The Energize Eastside project is multi-year effort by PSE to upgrade its Eastside transmission lines from 115 kilovolt lines to 230 kilovolt lines. According to the company, the upgrade is necessary to meet increasing demand from residents and to provide a stronger back-up system through the area.

Puget Sound Energy has proposed two paths to get the new wires the 18 miles from the Talbot Hill substation in Renton to the Sammamish substation in Redmond.

In Renton, the "M Route" would take the wires along the path of the current transmission lines, parallel to Monroe Avenue Northewest, on an existing right-of-way. Though the new lines would be in the same place as the old ones, the new poles would be approximately 20 feet to 30 feet taller than the existing poles.

The second route through Renton is known as the "L route" and it runs past Gene Coulon Park and along the lake shore before veering east again just south of Interstate 90 and runs primarily through the Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad right-of way, an easement to which PSE purchased in 2010.

A lawsuit has been filed by a group representing 76 residents challenging the company's right-of-way access along the "L Route." It is unknown how and if that affects the company's plans.

The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. July 9 at Renton Technical College's Building I, Robert C. Roberts Campus Center Cafeteria, 3000 N.E. Fourth St., Renton.

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