KCC Approves Prairie Wind Transmission-Line Route

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The Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) has approved the transmission-line route as filed by Prairie Wind Transmission with modifications based on proposals by some landowners along and near the route.

Prairie Wind proposed its route to the KCC after extensive consultation with landowners, state and federal environmental and wildlife agencies, and environmental groups. The KCC approved a route that incorporated the best suggestions proposed by area landowners, some of which lower the estimated cost of the project.

The 110-mile double-circuit 345 kV high-capacity transmission line, part of the project commonly referred to as the Y-plan, will begin near Colwich connecting to Medicine Lodge, Kan., and then continuing south to the Kansas-Oklahoma border.

The approved route, as recommended by Prairie Wind, avoids the Red Hills, which has an ecosystem inhabited by sensitive species, including the lesser prairie chicken and a number of bat species.

Prairie Wind plans to begin working with landowners along the route this summer and fall to obtain rights of way. Construction is expected to begin mid-2012. The line is scheduled to be in service by the end of 2014.

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