The City of Visalia's road widening project at the Mooney Boulevard and Walnut Avenue intersection depends on the acquisition of a strip of private property necessary to relocate power poles. According to the Visalia Times-Delta article, "Power poles, land acquisition trip up Visalia's plans for transforming Mooney/Walnut intersection," the necessary strip of land belongs to the owners of the Peachtree Shopping Center. Those owners do not want the power poles on their property, and Visalia's City Council has therefore approved the use of eminent domain.
According to the owners, there is no public need to relocate the power poles onto their property. Visalia, on the other hand, believes it has no other options, and actually believes the project will have significant benefits on top of the intersection improvements. Visalia's attorney explains:
"Old wooden poles will be replaced with fewer metal poles. There will be fewer lines and a wider street. We're a little disappointed they don't see the benefits."
Visalia appears ready to move forward quickly: the article reports that it will file the lawsuit in the next few days, seek possession, and then send the project out for bid.
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