A resident in Lunenburg County says new power lines being placed on Highway 332 are "dangerous and offensive" and "an insult to common sense."
"If NSP (Nova Scotia Power) is trying to move power lines across a scenic route here, they are probably doing it all over the province. Tourism is so important to NS that we cannot afford to let this continue," Marion Homer of Rose Bay wrote in an email to LighthouseNOW.
Homer reached out to Lunenburg MLA Suzanne Lohnes-Croft for her help in the matter.
"I'm writing to you because NSP appears to be in the process of moving power lines from an unobtrusive location behind homes to a highly scenic stretch of route 332 on the Lighthouse Route," Homer told Lohnes-Croft in an email sent January 20.
"I realize that NSP is a private company, but they are installing their poles on the edge of a public highway, so surely the province must have some control in the matter," she suggested.
Homer noted that the road in the vicinity of the residence at civic address 2442 where the poles were placed is "curvy" and cars are prone to slide off of it during icy conditions. "Poles adjacent to the road are more likely to be hit by cars, and this will cause power outages," she warned.
The stretch of road in question showcases parts of Feltzen South, Corkum's Island, the Lower South Cove, as well as the Lunenburg Academy in the distance.
"The vista is easily viewed as cars drive the Lighthouse Route, and I have seen cars pull over at this area to take photos. Interposing power poles plus electrical, phone, and cable lines between the viewers and the view turns a quintessential Nova Scotia scene into something much less than what it has been. Additionally, power lines marring the view will reduce property values, and hence property taxes," opined Homer.
She explained that currently the power lines run through fields located just behind the houses and in sight of the road, and are "fairly accessible."
"Given safety and aesthetic concerns about the proposed new location, I question whether the new location is really a better choice than the existing lines," Homer said.
In her email, the Rose Bay resident asked Lohnes-Croft to contact the power company and "have them postpone completion of this project until appropriate government departments have had time to investigate," and to " Work to prevent this insult to common sense."
Leena Ali, Lohnes-Croft's constituency assistant, told LighthouseNOW the office has reached out to NSP on the matter.
"They tell us that the power lines are only supplying a single customer and not any others on the road," Ali reported.
She also said the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure was contacted to determine whether NSP had the appropriate permits for the placement of the poles, however since the department could only share limited information about permits when third parties are involved, no further information was expected to be forthcoming.
Moreover, reported Ali, "We haven't heard of any of these concerns from any other constituents." She said there was not much more the MLA could do at this point.
Jacqueline Foster, a spokeswoman for NSP, confirmed to LighthouseNOW the poles were installed as "part of a small line extension to connect a new customer. Three poles were placed along the road and three along the customer's driveway to supply power to the customer."
Foster didn't immediately know why the poles were placed on the opposite side of the road to the house or whether more poles would be placed on that side in the future, but was looking into it at the time of writing.