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City of Joplin approves Empire Electric substation - KOAM TV 7

City of Joplin approves Empire Electric substation

Updated: October 10, 2012 / 5:00 PM CST

Updated October 2, 2012 at 1:05 PM CST:  The Joplin city council gives the green light for increased electric power in the southern part of the city.

Council members approved the new substation in south Joplin at last night's meeting with a 5 to 3 vote.

Empire Electric had bought five acres in the Hidden Hills neighborhood to build it, but some homeowners in that area opposed the idea.

After taking concerns into consideration the company revised its plan.

One of the big concerns residents had was the road access for construction and later use.  There is only one way in and one way out.

But Empire officials say they have obtained a right-of-way for a construction road that will come in from another direction.

With last night's vote Empire will now be able to start construction.

Reported October 1, 2012 at 5:00 PM CST:  The fate of the new sub-station in south Joplin could be decided at tonight's city council meeting.

Empire Electric bought five acres in the Hidden Hills neighborhood in hopes of building a new electric sub-station.

Officials say the sub-station is needed to meet higher electricity demands as the new Mercy Hospital moves forward with construction.

But the location has sparked mixed feelings for some surrounding residents.

After taking neighbors concerns into consideration the company has revised the sub-station plan they are hoping the city council will approve tonight.

One big concern residents had was the road access for construction and later use because there is only one way in and one way out.

But Empire officials say they have obtained a right of way for a construction road that will come in from another direction.

Empire still needs the city council to vote for its revised plan to get a special use permit to start construction.  But if the city council votes against the location of the sub-station Empire will be forced to purchase another property, which they believe will stir up the same complaints.

"If we have to look for a different location, first of all we will have to find someone who will sell us property or will have to go to condemnation which we prefer not to do, then we will have to go through the whole process again," says Amy Bass, Corporate Communications Director for Empire.

A representative from Empire will be at the meeting to propose the revised plan to the city council tonight at 7 p.m.

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