Monday, April 18, 2016

Sunny Glen Residents to Present Petition to Commissioners Court



Residents of Sunny Glen will present a petition (text below) to Brewster County Commissioners Court regarding evacuation routes for the Sunny Glen residential area at the Brewster County Courthouse, Commissioners Courtroom, 6th and Avenue E in Alpine, Texas TOMORROW, Tuesday April 19, 2016 at 9:00 am, during Public Comments.

Approximately 135 homes in the Sunny Glen residential area of Brewster County depend on FM 1703 as the only road in and out of the area. Residents representing a majority of the affected homes in Sunny Glen have signed the petition.

The Trans-Pecos pipeline poses an increased risk of fire to Sunny Glen, an area of already elevated risk, by the planned construction and operation of a 42” high-pressure natural gas pipeline, which is sited immediately bordering Sunny Glen to both the east and south and crossing under FM 1703, the only road in and out of the area.

The pipeline company Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) stated during its town hall meeting on July 8, 2015 that it had analyzed alternate routes, which would route the pipeline outside of Sunny Glen, but according to the map Trans-Pecos Pipeline, LLC provided to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on October 6, 2015, ETP has decided the route the that passes right up against the Sunny Glen residential area is the most feasible (affordable and profitable). It was also stated by Rick Smith of ETP at that meeting, that the company was aware there is only one access road to Sunny Glen and with respect to another exit they were looking into it and working on it and that is all he could say at that point; this is all the residents have heard about it since.

Regarding the stated intent of ETP to provide additional means of evacuating Sunny Glen, the residents of Sunny Glen will present a petition to the Brewster County Commissioner’s Court asking the county to require Trans-Pecos Pipeline, LLC. to fund and, in conjunction with the county, construct two all-weather evacuation roads, prior to construction of any pipeline through the Sunny Glen area. One road to serve the north end of FM 1703 as an escape route to State Highway 118 and one road as an evacuation route exiting the west end of Sunny Glen canyon.

If you would like to express your safety concerns related to evacuation roads and plans, sufficiency of emergency equipment and manpower, lack of medical facilities or just want to express your general safety concerns and worries, please sign up to make a three minute comment before the meeting!

For those who don't wish to speak, just your presence will express the to the Commissioners Court that safety should be of the highest priority.
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Text of the Petition in Favor of Brewster County Building Evacuation Roads for Sunny Glen:

Approximately 135 homes and families in the Sunny Glen Subdivisions of Brewster County depend on FM 1703 as their only means of access. The hundreds of people living in Sunny Glen choose to live here despite the dry environment and threat of fire. However, the increased risk posed by construction and operation of a 42” high-pressure natural gas pipeline immediately bordering our subdivision and under the only road in and out of the area is unacceptable. The pipeline company has analyzed alternate routes, but has apparently decided that a route that travels right up against our residential area on both the east and south sides is the most feasible (affordable and profitable). Should a spark ignite a fire during construction or should a gas line rupture or explosion occur, hundreds of residents could rapidly become trapped in an inferno, with no means of evacuation or emergency vehicles reaching the fire.

Therefore, we the undersigned residents of Sunny Glen petition Brewster County Commissioners Court to require Trans-Pecos Pipeline, LLC. to fund and, in conjunction with the county, construct two all-weather roads, prior to construction of any pipeline through the Sunny Glen area. One road to serve as an escape route to State Highway 118 and one road as an escape route to the west of Sunny Glen canyon. This access should be capable of supporting trucks and heavy equipment necessary for fire control and emergency services access; at least one road should be paved. These roads should be maintained over the life of the Trans-Pecos Pipeline, and made available to all residents of Sunny Glen, and as a general use county road, without restriction.

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