American Transmission Co.

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News | American Transmission Co. - Part 35

American Transmission Co. to discuss preliminary route corridors for proposed power line to serve western Milwaukee County

Open house will be Oct. 21, 4-7 p.m. at the Wauwatosa Civic Center

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – An informational open house on Thursday, Oct. 21 at the Wauwatosa Civic Center will provide area landowners and members of the public an opportunity to comment on American Transmission Co.’s proposal for a new 138,000- volt transmission line to be located primarily in Wauwatosa.

“An approximately 2-mile transmission line is needed to connect to a new substation proposed by We Energies,” explains Mary Carpenter, local relations representative for ATC. “We Energies’ planning forecasts indicate that additional power is needed in the area to serve their local customers.”

According to We Energies’ planning studies, electric demand in the U.S Highway 45 corridor in western Milwaukee County is projected to double as soon as 2016-2018. “Studies also indicate that existing distribution substations and feeders that serve the area will not be adequate to meet anticipated future electric demand,” says Andrew Gumm, We Energies manager of project siting. “To respond to the area’s growing electric needs, we plan to build a new distribution substation adjacent to the existing Milwaukee County Substation and Milwaukee County Power Plant at 93rd Street and Watertown Plank Road.”

American Transmission Co. staff, along with representatives from We Energies, will be on hand at the Wauwatosa Civic Center between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 21, to discuss with stakeholders the plans, including preliminary corridors being considered for the power line.

“We look to the public, particularly people who may be impacted, to participate in the process by providing comments and input,” says Carpenter. “This first of three informal open houses is the best venue for people to learn about the project and to have a voice in shaping decisions about where the line will be located.”

ATC mailed open house invitations to potentially affected landowners and businesses. During the next year, ATC will narrow the potential routes before filing an application to build the line with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin in early 2012. If approved by the PSCW, construction of the new line would begin in 2014 to meet an inservice date of 2015.

Note to editors: A map and additional information on the project is available at www.atcprojects.com

Helicopter crews will patrol ATC transmission lines

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – Helicopter crews began the annual patrolling of American Transmission Co. electric transmission lines Monday to look for damage, right-of-way encroachments and vegetation issues.

ATC contracted the services of Chemair Helicopters of Jefferson, Wis. Crews are patrolling the transmission system in Bell 206B Jet Ranger helicopters. Weather permitting, crews will follow the general timeline below to inspect lines within the ATC service territory:

  • Mid-September – Upper Peninsula of Michigan and northern Wisconsin
  • Late September, early October — northern and central Wisconsin
  • November and December — southern Wisconsin

ATC conducts helicopter patrols two or three times a year to detect potential problems that can be corrected to avoid unplanned power outages. Many of ATC’s 9,400 miles of transmission lines are located in relatively remote areas of Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and it is difficult and time consuming for crews to reach these areas by vehicle or on foot. Aerial inspections allow crews to reach secluded or difficult-to-reach lines and identify potential problems such as damaged lines or insulators, or tree limbs that could fall, damage equipment and cause power outages.

Crews will inspect the lines by flying approximately 10 feet above the wires, and they will avoid flying over livestock where possible. Schedule may vary due to weather and the need to work around the gun deer hunting season.

Note to editors: A map of the ATC service territory is available at www.atcllc.com

ATC’s studies identify $3.4 billion in transmission investment needed over next 10 years

Annual planning assessment includes regional, multi-benefit projects for reliability, economic savings and renewable energy delivery

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – American Transmission Co. has issued its annual 10-Year Transmission System Assessment, calling for $3.4 billion in electric transmission system improvements in portions of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan through 2019.

“There is an increasing need for an expanded regional transmission system because of an emerging wholesale marketplace and federal and state policy changes,” explains Flora Flygt, director of strategic projects at ATC. “This year’s assessment not only addresses projects needed for system reliability, but also includes emerging projects that meet larger, regional needs based on economic benefits and public policy initiatives for renewable energy.”

ATC’s 2010 assessment of transmission system needs includes:

  • $1.0 billion for transmission network upgrades,
  • $1.7 billion in interconnection and asset renewal projects, replacements and other small network improvements and
  • $0.7 billion in regional, multi-benefit projects.

Several regional planning initiatives undertaken by multiple stakeholders have identified common projects, including 345-kV lines between La Crosse and Madison, Wis., and Madison and Dubuque, Iowa. While still under study, ATC is beginning public outreach later this month on the Badger Coulee project, a proposed 150-mile 345-kV line between La Crosse and the greater Madison areas. Other emerging projects include new or upgraded 138- and 345-kV facilities to accommodate a generator upgrade at Point Beach Nuclear Plant and a potential six-mile, 345-kV line to alleviate congestion on transmission facilities in Kenosha County.

“Access to economic sources of generation continues to be an emphasis in our planning studies,” notes Paul Roehr, director of system planning. “The infrastructure improvements we have made in the last 10 years have eased constraints on our system and have allowed our customers access to lower-cost sources of electricity.”

When the Midwest wholesale market was established in 2005, the average locational marginal price within ATC’s footprint was $63.27 per megawatt hour, more than $10 higher than the average in neighboring market hubs. In 2009, the difference was only $1.27 per megawatt hour.

Since 2001, ATC has invested more than $2.2 billion to:

  • upgrade more than 1,650 miles of transmission line,
  • improve 140 electric substations and
  • build 40 new transmission lines (530 miles).

ATC’s 10-Year Assessment is available online at www.atc10yearplan.com

American Transmission Co. announces open houses for Badger Coulee Transmission Line Project

Eight informational open houses to be held throughout the project study area

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – American Transmission Co. is beginning a multi-year public outreach process for the proposed Badger Coulee Transmission Line Project with the first in a series of informational open houses for residents and other stakeholders in the 150-mile project study area in late September and early October.

Studies indicate that a 345-kilovolt transmission line from the La Crosse area to the greater Madison area would provide multiple benefits to the state of Wisconsin including improved electric system reliability, economic savings for utilities and energy consumers, and better access to renewable energy.

ATC is hosting eight open houses throughout the project study area to provide stakeholders with more information about the project and answer questions. The public is invited to attend any of the following open houses:

Monday, Sept. 27, Stoney Creek Inn, Onalaska
Tuesday, Sept. 28, Westby Coon Prairie Lutheran Church, Westby
Wednesday, Sept. 29, Kalahari Resort Convention Center, Wisconsin Dells
Thursday, Sept. 30, Sauk Prairie Community Center, Sauk City
Monday, Oct. 4, Hillsboro Fireman’s Community Center, Hillsboro
Tuesday, Oct. 5, Cranberry Country Lodge, Tomah
Wednesday, Oct. 6, Madison Marriott West Convention Center, Middleton
Thursday, Oct. 7, Grace Bible Church, Portage
Open houses at all locations run from 1 to 7 p.m.

“Before ATC seeks local or regulatory approval for a project, a comprehensive public involvement process takes place to gather input and feedback for a proposed transmission line,” said ATC Local Relations Manager Sarah Justus. “We invite everyone who could be impacted by the project to get involved. Successful planning and siting of transmission lines that bring power into your communities depends on local participation.” ATC will hold three more rounds of open houses over the next two years to gather public input and narrow potential routes before filing an application to build the line with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin, anticipated in 2013. If approved by the PSC, construction of the new line would begin in 2016 to meet an in-service date of 2018.

Note to editors: A map and additional information on the Badger Coulee Transmission Line Project is available at www.BadgerCoulee.com

American Transmission Co. beginning construction on Milton power line

Line will bring power to new Rock Energy Cooperative substation

MADISON, Wis. – American Transmission Co. on Friday will begin construction activities on a new four-mile, 69-kilovolt electric transmission line to serve the Milton area. Construction activities will begin with vegetation clearing along the route in preparation for ATC to drill holes and set pole foundations beginning in September.

The new line is needed to bring power to a new substation that Rock Energy Cooperative is building near the Milton Crossroads Business Park. ATC and REC introduced the project and preliminary route corridors to the public in August 2009, and held two public open houses to gather input on possible routes before identifying the final route in January 2010. During the past several months ATC has been designing the line and acquiring easements from landowners along the route. The new Red Hawk Substation is currently under construction, and the entire project is planned to be complete and in service this winter.

“We have worked closely with landowners, businesses and public officials impacted by the route,” says Jon Callaway, local relations representative for ATC. “As we move forward with the construction activities, we will we continue to work with landowners to secure easements and keep them informed of our construction activities.”

The approximately $4.2 million line will connect an existing 69-kilovolt transmission line that runs parallel to Cty Hwy Y to a new Rock Energy Cooperative substation near the intersection of Harmony Milton Town Line Road and Cty Hwy M. The western part of the new line will be mostly on agricultural land; the remainder of the line will follow Town Line Road, the future site of the realigned Hwy 26 and Cty Hwy M.

Note to editors: A map of the route is available on our website at www.atc-projects.com