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TXU power line moving Ferris-Red Oak heliport

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Ellis County Press
FERRIS - The heliport shared by the cities of Ferris and Red Oak is temporarily closed and will soon be moved to a site 1,000 feet west of its present location.

'With regard to the heliport, I received the deed to our half with directions to go ahead and file it with the county clerk,' said Ferris City Attorney Richard Wilson during a council meeting on Jan. 2.

'The land does connect with FM 664, contrary to what we were told before.'

Citizens who remember a tooth-and-nail fight with the City of Dallas in 1994 expressed concern about the move. 'If they move it west, it may open up a can of worms,' said Bob Bardell, a former reporter with the Ellis County Press.

But Ferris Mayor Jimmie Birdwell said there is no cause for concern. 'Our city limit still hooks up to theirs,' he said. 'It's completely tied up.'

Betsy Elam, Red Oak city attorney, said the cities are making the change to accommodate TXU.

'We foresee no impact on any previous annexations,' Elam said.

'We don't anticipate it to change anything.'

Elam indicated the heliport is only temporarily closed. 'It's still a work in progress,' she said. 'There are still several things we need to do.'

The heliport move will be financed by TXU, since it is made necessary by power line construction. The company has also taken responsibility for all necessary clearances, including FAA approval.

'It's far enough from the TXU power line,' said Birdwell. 'TXU made sure of that.'

No timeline has been given for the new heliport to be in service.

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