American Transmission Co.

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Blog | American Transmission Co. - Part 42

ATC wraps up electric work in Zoo Interchange

American Transmission Co. has just completed its work in the Milwaukee Zoo Interchange to relocate and erect new electric transmission infrastructure to accommodate the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s interchange expansion plans.

ATC began the transmission line portion of the project in June 2013 to relocate seven overhead 138-kilovolt transmission lines and erect 59 single pole structures to replace 58 lattice towers. 
“Residents and commuters were able to watch the transformation over the past year and a half while we removed the old structures, installed the new poles and strung wire across six lanes of traffic – all while the interchange was kept open to motorists,” said Barbara Mikolajczyk, ATC major project manager. “We were able to complete our work more than two months ahead of schedule because there was great communication and collaboration among the DOT and the multiple utilities involved.”

“Because ATC completed its portion of the project ahead of schedule, that helps our scheduling with other contractors this winter and next spring,” said DOT Construction Project Manager Mike Burns.

Project highlights include:

  • Line energized and project complete: November 2014 – two-and-half months ahead of schedule
  • Line length: approximately 11 miles 
  • Voltage: 138,000 volts
  • 58 lattice structures removed (circa 1954); equals 1.24 million pounds of steel removed
  • 59 new single-pole structures erected; equals 2.3 million pounds of steel installed
  • 40.5 miles of wire removed and new wires installed
  • Transmission pole height: 115 to 180 feet; new poles are 50-60 feet taller than the lattice structures
  • Tallest transmission pole: 180 feet with five sections, nine feet in diameter at the base and weight of 130,000 pounds
  • Longest span between two transmission poles: 1,000 feet
  • Project cost: approximately $50 million

ATC employees volunteer during United Way Days of Caring

During American Transmission Co.’s United Way Days of Caring this year, more than 100 employees volunteered for projects at various agencies. In the span of a few short days, employees helped United Way organizations accomplish a great deal, while at the same time learning how much help is needed in the community each day.

Day of Caring volunteers were busy at Feeding America

ATC’s Day of Caring volunteers from the Pewaukee office were very busy sorting and labeling food for the hungry at Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin in Milwaukee.
Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin is a food bank that distributes more than 22 million pounds of food a year to 1,000 pantries, meal programs and other nonprofit agencies that serve 330,000 people in eastern Wisconsin. The Milwaukee distribution center provides food to nearly 800 nonprofit programs in nine counties. Representatives at the center shared that they could have a group like ATC’s help out every day.
 
Employees help Interfaith clean up gardens before winter
You would have thought that an army went in to clean up the gardens at Interfaith’s Washington Park Senior Center in Milwaukee, Wis. However, it was a powerful group of 10 ATC employees who pulled weeds, trimmed bushes, transplanted and cut down perennials to make the gardens look beautiful.
Since 1975, Interfaith has established many programs focused on quality services, social opportunities and valuable resources to enhance the welfare of older adults and family caregivers who support them. The community center offers a warm place to gather for older adults to enjoy the company of friends, take exercise classes, use computers and enjoy many other group activities along with the wonderful gardens ATC’s volunteers helped spruce up.
 

Volunteers at LifeStriders help with stables and horse riding lessons

It was rainy, but LifeStriders Therapeutic Riding Center, located on a farm in Waukesha County, Wis., had plenty of indoor work for our volunteers to do. ATC employees helped with cleanup in the horse stables, organized equipment, created teaching tools for use during riding lessons and later assisted LifeStriders staff and other volunteers with riding lessons.

LifeStriders provides fun and interactive sessions to help children and adults with special needs experience the physical and mental benefits achieved through working with horses. They currently have 104 students enrolled in the program, which requires more than 300 volunteer hours each week, so the help of all volunteers is greatly appreciated.


Area was full of leaves at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary

ATC’s employees did a lot of raking during a fall clean up at Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary in Green Bay, Wis. Everyone enjoyed the opportunity to give back to the community while they worked in the fresh air.

The Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary is a beautiful 700 acre urban wildlife refuge featuring live animal exhibits, educational displays, miles of hiking/skiing trails and various wildlife viewing opportunities. It is home to the second largest wildlife rehabilitation program in Wisconsin, caring for more than 4,500 orphaned and injured animals annually.

 
Employees help build a brighter future for a Waukesha family 
Two groups of employees helped with siding, building a porch and constructing shelving for a Habitat for Humanity home in Waukesha, Wis.
Through volunteer labor and tax-deductible donations of money, land and materials, Habitat for Humanity of Waukesha County builds or rehabilitates houses in partnership with families who need an affordable home.
Group works through icy conditions to sort food
Working in a cold room, ATC volunteers from Madison and Cottage Grove, Wis., sorted 28,500 pounds of frozen food at the Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin.
In one year, Second Harvest and its partners provide more than 12 million meals to those facing hunger.


 Many cats will have a cozy place to sleep thanks to ATC volunteers
 

Volunteers at the Dane County Humane Society had fun while they made more than 45 cat beds. The group received a tour of the facility and donated needed supplies to the organization.
 
DCHS is an open admission shelter that accepts animals that need assistance no matter their age, health status or temperament. DCHS places all healthy or treatable cats and dogs in new homes.
 
ATC employees had a great time during the Days of Caring for the United Way and truly enjoyed giving back to the communities where they live and work.

Watch a video to learn why ATC employees volunteered for the United Way.

ATC named one of the best medium-sized companies in the U.S.


American Transmission Co. has been named one of the best medium workplaces on the 2014 Great
Place to Work® Best Small & Medium Workplaces list, published in FORTUNE magazine.
We competed against hundreds of companies across the country to receive this honor to rank in the 25 top medium-sized workplaces. This is the first time we have applied for and received this honor in our 13-year history.
 
The rigorous selection process included a written application, but the bulk of the weight of the application came from an employee survey about benefits programs and company practices. Seventy-one percent of ATC employees participated in the survey and their responses placed ATC in the 95 percentile for positive marks in the five dimensions of a great workplace: credibility, respect, fairness, pride and camaraderie.
“Every day, we strive to be a company where engaged and productive employees enjoy working. The best way to measure how we are doing is to ask employees for feedback,” said ATC President and CEO John Procario. “We are honored to be named among the best places to work in the country, most importantly because it is our employees’ assessment that put us there.”

Here are a few things that employees had to say which helped get ATC in the top 25:

  • “ATC puts a high emphasis on safety and is a steward of the environment.”
  • “I really enjoy the autonomy of my job. I am given all the resources, the time and the encouragement to function at a very high level. I feel I align well with ATC’s decisions and values, and that the company wants me to excel. Everybody is respected here.”
  • “The corporate culture is exceptionally supportive. People go out of their way to help one another. People are also polite and considerate. There are no organizational barriers to cooperation, so people easily work in informal teams across functional areas to get things done.”
  • “Ensuring electricity is reliable and affordable plays a huge part in our jobs and everyone in our service territory’s lives.”

Check out the 2014 Great Place to Work® Best Small & Medium Workplaces list, as published in FORTUNE magazine here.
Learn more about why ATC made the list in the Great Place to Work® Great Rated! Review.

Interested in working at ATC? Visit our careers page here.

ABOUT GREAT PLACE TO WORK: Great Place to Work® is the global authority on high-trust, high-performance workplace cultures. Through proprietary assessment tools, advisory services, and employer branding programs, including Best Companies lists and workplace reviews, Great Place to Work® provides the benchmarks, framework, and expertise needed to create, sustain, and recognize outstanding workplace cultures.
In the United States, Great Place to Work® produces the annual FORTUNE 100 Best Companies to Work For® list and the Great Place to Work® Best Small & Medium Workplaces list.Follow Great Place to Work® online at www.greatplacetowork.com and on Twitter at @GPTW_US. For information about global operations at Great Place to Work®, visit www.greatplacetowork.net.

ABOUT GREAT RATED!: The Great Place to Work® Model forms the basis of Great Rated!’s methodology, and is relied on internationally as the premiere assessment of employer culture. Great Rated!™ tells the story of workplace culture to job seekers from the viewpoint of a company’s own employees. Great Rated!™ reviews go well beyond a list of benefits or a handful of employee comments, to provide a comprehensive picture of what makes a company great. The site offers both ratings and reviews so that job seekers can easily compare the strengths and benefits across multiple organizations. Great Rated!™ works with a number of strategic partners including Simply Hired, and Digital First Media.

ABOUT FORTUNE: Fortune is a global business magazine that has been revered in its content and credibility since 1930. Published biweekly, every issue is completely saturated with profoundly deep and extensively detailed analyses of the entire field of business, including specific companies, tendencies, prominent people, and new ideas that are characterizing the modern world. Fortune magazine is particularly well-known for its exceptionally reliable annual rankings of companies. Examples of these highly researched features are the “Fortune 500,” which ranks the world’s companies by gross revenue, and the “Best Companies to Work For,” both of which have become industry benchmarks. This publication furthers understanding of the economy, provides implementable business strategy, and maximizes ability to make objective decisions. Fortune magazine is prized in its category of magazines and has been proven a reliable source of integral knowledge.



ATC team takes on Briggs & Al’s Run & Walk for the kids

ATC’s All for The Children team lined up for Briggs & Al’s Run & Walk for Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin on Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014, to help kids receive care and services they need to improve their lives. Employees and family members had fun and raised almost $3,000 in addition to ATC’s bib sponsorship.

  It was chilly as ATC’s team warmed up for the event.


  Family members sporting their team T-shirts.

There was something for everyone, including an 8K run and a 5-mile or 3-mile walk through downtown Milwaukee. Live performers pumped up the crowd with a Radio Disney sing-a-long at the starting line on the Marquette University campus. Various musicians, cheerleaders and local residents were there to encourage the runners and walkers along the way. Afterwards, participants enjoyed music from Mat Kearney and other activities on the Summerfest grounds.


  Walkers take a moment to huddle up and smile.
ATC is proud to support Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and has been a sponsor of this event since 2011. The organization provides many services throughout Wisconsin, including health care, counseling, family resource centers and treatment foster care. Click here to see a map of communities in Wisconsin with CHW services. 

A bird’s eye view of construction on the Zoo Interchange, Western Milwaukee County Electric Reliability projects

We’re continuing to make progress on the Zoo Interchange Project, a project to relocate seven overhead 138-kilovolt transmission lines to accommodate expansion and realignment of the interchange. Lattice structures are being replaced with 50 single pole structures, many of which have already been swapped out. The transmission lines west of the interchange were completed and placed into service in May.

Crews were hard at work in late August installing conductor (wires) on the transmission structures on the southern portion of the project. Construction on the lines south of the Zoo Interchange will continue through this fall and winter and will be placed into service this winter.
On the Western Milwaukee County Electric Reliability Project, crews are using wooden construction mats to protect the ground and wetlands from damage by heavy machinery as they work to install transmission foundations and structures along the portion of the line that runs along Underwood Creek Parkway.
Duct instillation work for the underground portion of the line should be completed in September. Foundation work and pole setting for the overhead portion of the project will continue this fall, with wire stringing occurring in late fall. The project is on track to be placed into service in spring 2015.