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  1. #1
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    Nov 2010
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    Vancouver, Washington, United States
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    Default Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Way

    My question involves an easement in the state of: Washington state

    We bought a house three years ago that has an acre of pasture behind it with a BPA tower in it. We were told that BPA has a right-of-way for access and that we were not allowed to build anything permenant in the pasture. Now, however, BPA has decided to build several larger towers along this line and I need to know if, since the new tower will be much taller and larger, they have the right to just build it and are not required to enter into a new agreement with us or possibly buy us out? From what I understand, the new tower will require 150 feet of space around it and I'm not that sure that our house is more than 150 feet from the location of the new tower. If our house is far enough away from the tower, it would not be 150 feet from the new, higher voltage lines because the lines run parallel to our back yard. I would really appreciate any information about this area of law. Thanks so much.

  2. #2
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    Jan 2006
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    you need to refer to the easement agreement to determine what is and isn't allowed.

  3. #3
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    Nov 2010
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    Vancouver, Washington, United States
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    Thank you so much for responding.
    I haven't gotten a copy of it yet, but it seems to me that, if my house would be an unsafe distance from either the larger tower or the larger lines, that they would have to do something about it, right?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    If there is some requirement there be 150 feet around the tower and it is not possible with your house where it is, then they simply couldn't put up the tower without some other action such as purchasing your house or moving the tower away from your house.


    Until you find out what the easement allows and what their very specific designs call for, anything scenario is simply speculation.

    the easiest way to get information about their intentions would be to call them and ask them. Most utility companies have to go through a lot of work to do what they are. Dealing with affected real estate owners is part of it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    From what I understand, the new tower will require 150 feet of space around it and I'm not that sure that our house is more than 150 feet from the location of the new tower.
    Who told you that?

    I'm unaware of any type of electric transmission lines which would require a 300 foot right of way width. The 150 foot figure would be at the maximum end for a right of way width. That would mean that you would have to be 75 feet or less from the centerline of the ROW in order to have a problem.

    As for the rest, you should follow jk's advice and read the actual easement agreement. Sometimes the original easement agreement contains restrictions on sizes and types of structures.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    Quote Quoting LandSurveyor
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    I'm unaware of any type of electric transmission lines which would require a 300 foot right of way width. The 150 foot figure would be at the maximum end for a right of way width. That would mean that you would have to be 75 feet or less from the centerline of the ROW in order to have a problem.
    .
    they may have a rule to maintain at least 150 feet from any structure regardless what their easement for maintenance actually requires. Personally, I wouldn't want a high-tension power line within 1/4 mile of my house so I have no problem with them having a self imposed limitation of at least 150 feet from a structure.

  7. #7
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    Oct 2007
    Location
    Ohio
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    Personally, I wouldn't want a high-tension power line within 1/4 mile of my house so I have no problem with them having a self imposed limitation of at least 150 feet from a structure.
    I have a 135kv line 100 feet from my house; no ill effects, or, maybe that explains a lot.

    There may be some new super lines coming through in the future but I have been working on long line rights of way since 1972 and I have never seen a 300' ROW. But I learn new things regularly and I learn some of them here.

  8. #8
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    Nov 2010
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    Vancouver, Washington, United States
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    This is a 500kv line and tower that they are putting in so I think it makes a huge difference. I believe the ones that are already here are the 135kv.
    They are already sending out pamphlets every few weeks on the project but they have not cemented the route that it will take yet. We seem to be on a route that is one of the major routes being considered, though.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    that is why I said it may not be an actual ROW but a company policy or some other entity's policy. I don't know what rating the lines are they have or what they are going to but I wouldn't want to be within 150 feet of a 765k line. Honestly, I wouldn't want to be within 100 feet of a 138k line either, especially since it is illegal to build a transformer that utilizes the EMF from those lines and I would be so tempted to do just that.

  10. #10
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    Nov 2010
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    Vancouver, Washington, United States
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    Default Re: Can Utility Company Build a Bigger Tower in Our Pasture with Existing Right-Of-Wa

    Sorry, also, does anyone know what they are willing to pay for the houses that they do have to remove? As far as percentage of appraised value?

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