To the Editor:
Emera Maine and two advisory groups in Bar Harbor have been working closely together to find the best solution to improving electric system reliability. Emera Maine is in the third and final phase of the MDI Reliability Project, which not only will improve reliability but also will support projected load growth.
The final phase of the project requires a new substation, infrastructure upgrade and a new transmission line, which together will support projected customer needs well into the future.
The substation and transmission line advisory committees are made up of a broad representation of residents, businesses, town government, conservation groups and Acadia National Park. The groups have been working together since July 2014 with the shared goal of ensuring reliable power to Bar Harbor while minimizing community impacts and managing project costs.
Emera Maine and the advisory committees would like the Bar Harbor community to know the process is working, and we are making progress. The focus is on evaluating location and design, and the process has brought forth viable options for alternative substation designs as well as other possible locations for the substation. Locations currently being evaluated include the Woodbury Road location, the site of the existing substation currently in operation at Edgewood Street and other potential sites that cannot yet be disclosed publicly.
Two alternative routes for the transmission line are being evaluated closely as well. Either route will originate at the existing Burns Corner substation on the Knox Road and end at the to-be-determined location of the new substation in Bar Harbor. One alternative would run north on the Knox Road to Route 3 and continue along Route 3 into Bar Harbor. The other option would run south on Knox Road, then follow the Crooked Road to where it meets Route 3 and continue into Bar Harbor.
The committees are committed to helping find the locations and designs that would best serve the community, and to do so quickly, so that construction may begin in mid 2015. Future advisory committee meetings will be posted on the Town of Bar Harbor website when they are scheduled.
As in the past, the meetings are open to the public.
Emera Maine welcomes any inquiries from interested parties. Please feel free to contact Kendra Overlock at [email protected] or at 973-2895.
We appreciate your input and patience as we work to improve electric system reliability in Bar Harbor.