New, safer gas line will offer more protection to Woodside homes, residents

The Public Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) says it will begin work July 7 in Woodside to replace a 79-year-old gas transmission line with a new one that is larger and safer for area homeowners.Line 109, as it is known, runs along the eastern side of Interstate 280.  The replacement project will follow for the most part the current route except for the area proximate to Barkley Fields and Park.  Construction in the park area will last about four weeks with disruption to activities involving only the playing field.  The field will be restored to its original condition following construction.

The current gas line was originally laid in 1935 and measures 22” in diameter.  The new line will be 24” with the important safety feature of allowing for regular internal inspections of the entire line.  The project is in accord with the Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan (PSEP) created by Los Angeles-based SoCalGas.

All gas transmission operators in California are overseen by the California Public Utilities Commission, which in 2011 ordered that they each create a plan that would allow for cost-effective testing and replacing of all pipelines that haven’t been pressure tested.  To implement this directive, SoCalGas submitted to the commission its Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan, which the commission approved in June.

On the SoCalGas PSEP web page, the provider writes, “We believe that all customers will benefit from the added testing and safety validation” the new pipelines will provide.

PG&E will initiate other Line 109 work in Woodside – also on July 7 – on state land adjacent to Barkley Fields and Park as well as on Farm Hill Blvd.  This phase of the project is expected to take four months.

Woodside is situated in mid Silicon Valley, near Atherton and Palo Alto.  At the 2010 census, the population was 5,287, with 1,977 households.

For more information on the Line 109 project, contact Scott Hart at PG&E at (415) 517-6199.

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