Roselle residents voice concern over high-voltage power lines

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Residents are fighting to keep ComEd from installing high-voltage power lines in the northwest suburbs. (WLS)

Residents are fighting to keep ComEd from installing high-voltage power lines along a 9-mile stretch in the northwest suburbs. They say they fear the lines could have serious health implications.

To improve service reliability, ComEd wants to string 137-kilovolt electrical lines on giant poles like these for 9 miles along the southern edge of the soon-to-be-completed Elgin O'Hare Expressway.

Much of the way butts up against relatively new neighborhoods on an easement it seems nobody knew ComEd owned or was planning to build on.

"So you're looking at 175-foot, high-voltage power lines," said Damon Stewart, a concerned resident.

The music executive is raising two daughters here.

"There has been several studies that have thoroughly discussed that it's associated with all kinds of cancer for adults, stunted growth in children. It's something we really don't want to deal with," Stewart said.

ComEd will use 175-foot poles to carry the power. They rival municipal water towers in height. The utility says it has been criticized for not helping the suburban northwest grow.

But other neighbors in West Roselle says the project is unnecessary and was sprung on them in December.

ComEd has held public information meetings have over the last few weeks and another one will take place Saturday.

"We'll continue to understand what your concerns are and work with you and your community leaders," said Fidel Marquez, ComEd.

But those words are little comfort to other neighbors who just moved in and had no idea about what's likely to take place.

"To be honest with you, if we knew about this, we wouldn't have even bought it. We wouldn't have considered this place," said Jason Hanwell.

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