A Pipeline Runs Through It

On the night of Thursday, January 12, 2012 a pipeline that many area residents never knew existed turned things upside down in Wellington.  That is when more than 116,000 gallons of fuel spilled from an 8-inch pipeline owned by Sunoco Logistics.  As you can see from the map below, that pipeline runs right through the property where the district plans to build the new middle school.

I don't expect the pipeline to burst again and I believe it is probably safer now than it has been in years because I'm sure that Sunoco took every precaution and inspected every inch of the line.  But we didn't expect the pipe to burst in January and sometimes things happen.  Let's have a look at the map.

 

This map shows the property lines in the vicinity of the high school.  The two lots the school district owns are highlighted in yellow.

Without knowing for certain exactly where on this land the district would build the new middle school, we can only speculate as to the importance of discussing this pipeline.  Keep in mind, according to the levy committee, they have not determined where the school would go and have no intention of figuring that out unless the bond issue passes.

The thick red line that crosses the entire map, running right across the entire north parcel, is the location of Sunoco's pipeline.  I calculated this location by using a topographic map issued by the United States Geological Survey (USGS).  I used this USGS map as an overlay on top of a real estate map and traced the pipeline. 

If construction were to proceed, they could not build the new school on top of the pipeline.  Although it is a nice empty space, building north of the pipeline creates potential problems if another leak were to occur nearby on the pipeline.  Even the proximity of the high school to the pipeline may cause some concern.  Just think back to the size and scope of the cleanup operations that we witnessed this spring.  A new school at this location would be moving hundreds of students closer to this possibility.  Yes, it's a remote possibility.  But we've seen this happen once in our town.  What's stopping it from happening again?

 


Disclaimer:This site is not affiliated with the Village of Wellington, Wellington Exempted Village School District, or Citizens for Wellington Schools.  This site is privately owned and maintained and all expenses are paid for out of my own pocket.  This portion of the website was created to bring all pertinent information to one place, because when I did my own research on the subject I found that the information being published is sometimes incomplete or incorrect.  I have been careful to verify as much of my information as possible.  The sources of my data can be found within the links on the Resources page.