Prairie Wind Transmission Requests Permission To Build Transmission Line

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Prairie Wind Transmission LLC, a joint venture between Westar Energy and Electric Transmission America, has filed a siting permit application with the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC).

The permit requests permission to build a new, double-circuit 345 kV transmission line from Westar Energy's Wichita 345 kV substation to a new substation just east of Medicine Lodge, Kan., and then south to the Kansas-Oklahoma border.

Oklahoma Gas and Electric (OGE) will continue the line from the Kansas-Oklahoma border to its Woodward Substation, about 10 miles south of Woodward, Okla. The project is part of the Y-Plan that the Southwest Power Pool approved last year. This high-capacity transmission line will improve the regional electric grid by better integrating the east and west regions and facilitating the addition of renewable generation to the electric grid, according to the company.

Late last year and early this year, the company conducted six open houses to exchange information with landowners near several routes being considered for the transmission line. About 294 completed questionnaires were received from landowners and area residents who attended open houses or contacted the company regarding the line.

Landowners generally indicated they preferred a route that would minimize the proximity to residences, maintain reliable electric service, minimize length across tilled agricultural land, maximize the distance from public facilities and maximize the distance from businesses.

With the KCC's approval expected in late June, Prairie Wind Transmission will begin working with landowners to acquire easements in July or August. Once easements have been acquired, construction is estimated to begin in summer 2012. The company anticipates the project will be complete at the end of 2014 and estimates that it will cost about $225 million to construct the proposed line.

SOURCE: Prairie Wind Transmission

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