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Harrison Price
Posted on Monday, May 02, 2005 - 10:43 pm:   

Neighbors: You may have received a letter from Atmos this week noting that they will be digging up area streets to replace gas mains. The weakness of the letter is that it is not specific about which streets will be affected. I have learned from a phone conversation that Atmos is now working near Edgefield at Davis, and moving this way. They are trying to complete their project in advance of various street repairs the City has scheduled to undertake in the near future, so Lance Andrews, Director of Construction Management, said Atmos will be aggressive about keeping on schedule. Streets he said will be affected included Edgefield (all the way to Kessler Pkwy), some portion of Kessler Pkwy, and Lausanne (not necessarily a complete list).

For those homeowners affected, this project will likely be quite a mess. The main line will be dug out and replaced. However the replacement line – depending on the street – WILL PROBABLY NOT be replaced under the street surface this time. Rather – and portions of Edgefield and Kessler Pkwy were given as examples – the new line will be bored under the right of way beyond the curb, under residents’ front yards. It was described that the boring will help minimize the impact, but “work shafts” will have to be dug at certain intervals to give the boring equipment room to work. Exploratory digging will also be done to locate water & sewer lines. In addition, Atmos will be replacing the individual feed lines from the gas main to the meters (homes where such work has previously been done, such as pursuant to a renovation, will get a pass on this). Some of this work from the main to the home can be done by boring, but there will also be a lot of digging.

I emphasized to Lance that we have a great means of communicating over here, via the website and email distribution. He seemed genuinely happy about that; he said Atmos “had surprised residents in the Davis area” and didn’t want to do that again. He asked for the web URL. I gave it to him, plus the [email protected] address. He said he would be interested in writing a briefing to be distributed to the neighborhood. His contact info in case you don’t hear from him is:

Lance R. Andrews
Atmos Energy
Director – Construction Management
Mid-Tex Division

Helpfully, he also said they would upon request set appointments with individual residents to discuss the specific impact on homes in question. At this time of year, when many are planning landscaping and other projects, getting accurate information about what will take place will be very helpful. Lance cited a specific example, which he described as a “home I noticed in our pathway, putting the finishing touches on a new driveway approach, which we will have to dig up soon”.

Jeff Siegel
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 10:25 am:   

It would be very helpful to know exactly where Atmos plans to dig and bore in Kessler Park. Many of us have done or are doing extensive landscaping and it would be most irritating to finish a beautification project only to have Atmos tear it apart. Detailed communication from them will help us PLAN when and what we do to our yards. A map or PDF file either here (or on the Atmos web site with a link here) detailing the exact locations of their new lines would be most helpful.
Jeff Siegel
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 10:40 am:   

A follow up:

I had a nice conversation with Mr. Andrews at Atmos this morning. He's very responsive and wants to either have a neighborhood meeting to explain the construction plans and/or post a map of the expected construction here for people to see.

He tells me that he's emailed Mike Anglin and is waiting to hear back as to how to arrange posting of the appropriate materials/maps here. Given the recent rebranding of TXU Gas after its acquisition by Atmos, there appears to be an effort on their part to enhance communication and they seem interested in having a positive relationship with the neighborhood.
Mike Anglin
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 4:09 pm:   

That's good to hear, Jeff. He did email me and I forwarded it on to Pete Peabody (the current KNU president) for handling or delegation. As soon as we find out more, we'll post it here.
R. Dabney Tompkins
Posted on Tuesday, May 03, 2005 - 4:19 pm:   

I had a past client of mine who lives on Edgefield just north of Davis call to let me know that not only did they dig up her front yard, but Atmos also moved her gas meter from her back porch to the front of her house. In many older neighborhoods, gas meters are on porches, in garages and sometimes even in the house. After moving the meter, they also made her bring all her gas lines up to current code. This ended up costing her several thousand dollars and among other things, she was forced to removed the unvented wall gas heater in her bathroom. I for one have the gas meter in my garage and two bathroom heaters. We may all need to be prepared to face these issues as well.
Mike Anglin
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 11:07 am:   

My gas meter has always been inside my locked garage, but the utility company has NEVER had problems reading it very easily. How? What they did was install a small electronic device on it which transmits the meter information to their hand-held reader when standing in my front yard. No need to access the meter itself. Replacing gas lines that are defective is one thing, but I don't understand why Atmos is now turning back the clock and requiring everyone to have their meters physically located in the front yard. This is 2005. Makes no sense to me.
Jeff Siegel
Posted on Wednesday, May 04, 2005 - 11:18 am:   

I had to double the size of my gas meter last year when I installed a pool heater and BBQ. TXU Gas came and installed the meter in exactly the same location as it was before, INSIDE the house in a downstairs utility room. This new meter is read electronically as well. There was initially a question if the existing gas supply would be adequate for the larger meter, but there's been no problem
Harrison Price
Posted on Saturday, May 07, 2005 - 7:40 am:   

I made an appointment to discuss the project's impact on my property, and last Thursday representatives of Atmos met me at my home. They were very knowledgeable, and in about three minutes I learned exactly what work will take place.

There is no need to guess about what will happen at your particular home. Atmos can tell you. Just call for an appointment - contact information is listed in the first message above.

One item of special note: they said that in replacing the feed lines from the street to individual meters, they are often able to run the new tubing inside the existing metal gas line. This would of course dramatically minimize any impact on the landscape.
Posted on Wednesday, June 29, 2005 - 9:25 am:   

Lance Andrews has a new phone number

Unfortunately I have called him 3 times over the last few weeks. Still no reply. Anyone have an email address for him????
Pete Peabody
Posted on Wednesday, June 29, 2005 - 10:08 am:   

Here you go......

[email protected]

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