American Transmission Co.

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News | American Transmission Co. - Part 36

ATC applies for permission to improve transmission system in Sparta-Tomah area

Regulatory filing submitted to Public Service Commission of Wisconsin

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – American Transmission Co. has filed an application with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin to rebuild and upgrade an existing electric transmission line that connects the Monroe County Substation near Sparta and the Council Creek Substation near Tomah. ATC also will build a new substation as part of the project to improve electric system reliability.

“Rebuilding the existing line and adding an additional 161-kilovolt line will enhance electric reliability for the Sparta and Tomah communities,” said Charles Gonzales, senior local relations representative for ATC. “The new 161-kilovolt line will also provide economic savings by reducing line losses and providing access to lower-cost generation.”

Work on the 17-mile line, primarily along Highway 16, will involve replacing poles and wires on the existing 69-kV transmission line, adding a 161-kV circuit to the new steel poles and building the new Timberwolf Substation approximately one half-mile south of Interstate 90 along Highway 131.

ATC is coordinating with Dairyland Power Cooperative, Xcel Energy, Alliant Energy and Oakdale Electric Cooperative on the project. Construction of the approximately $36 million project will be completed within the area of the existing right-of-way and is expected to be in service mid-2013. For more information visit the PSC website at and enter Docket ID: 137-CE-158.

Note to editors: A map of the route is available at

American Transmission Co. announces plans for 150-mile, 345-kV transmission line in western Wisconsin

Badger Coulee Transmission Line Project is a multi-benefit project demonstrating reliability, economic and renewable benefits

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – Following approximately two years of study and analysis, American Transmission Co. has determined 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 access to additional renewable energy. As it finalizes its evaluation of the multiple benefits of the project, ATC will begin the public outreach efforts on the proposed Badger Coulee Transmission Line and will host a series of open houses this fall with the public and other stakeholders in the 150-mile area from La Crosse to Madison to explore routing options for the new line.

“There are multiple benefit indicators that make the Badger Coulee Transmission Line Project a plus for Wisconsin residents and the Midwest,” says John Procario, ATC president, chairman and chief executive officer. “It’s an exciting new project because it demonstrates multiple benefits. Badger Coulee enhances electric system reliability; it provides direct energy cost savings to electricity users, and it supports the public’s desire for the greater use of renewable energy resources.”

The Badger Coulee Transmission Line will improve electric system reliability in western Wisconsin by providing increased regional electric transfer capability into Wisconsin and alleviating stability issues in the Upper Midwest. ATC’s studies also indicate that building a more efficient high-voltage line offsets the need for approximately $140 million in lower-voltage upgrades in western Wisconsin communities.

The economic benefits of the Badger Coulee Transmission Line include providing utilities with greater access to the wholesale electricity market by reducing energy congestion. A new 345-kV line in western Wisconsin will give utilities greater capability to buy and sell power within the Midwest when it’s economic to do so, and those savings can be passed on to electricity consumers. A 345-kV line also delivers electricity more efficiently than lower voltage or heavily loaded transmission lines and reduces line losses in the delivery of power.

ATC’s studies further indicate that the Badger Coulee Transmission Line will support the transfer of renewable energy into Wisconsin to help meet public policy goals in Wisconsin and the Midwest region. That’s consistent with several regional transmission studies in which ATC is participating with other utilities that identify this corridor as key to moving renewable energy.

Announcement of the proposed Badger Coulee Transmission Line kicks off an inclusive and exhaustive process of public involvement and regulatory review. Following public input on routes, ATC currently expects to file an application to build the line with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin in 2013. If approved by the PSC, construction on the new line would begin in 2015 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

American Transmission Co. and SMART Study co-sponsors release Phase One study results for transporting renewable energy across Upper Midwest

PEWAUKEE, WI – American Transmission Co. along with co-sponsors Electric Transmission America, a transmission joint venture between subsidiaries of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) and MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co., Exelon Corp. (NYSE: EXC), NorthWestern Energy (NYSE: NWE), Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL), and MidAmerican Energy Co., a subsidiary of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co., today released Phase One of a comprehensive study of the transmission needed in the Upper Midwest to ensure reliability and support renewable energy development for transport to population and electricity load centers.

Phase One results of the Strategic Midwest Area Transmission (SMART) Study recommend three alternatives for further study based on a rigorous reliability assessment and stakeholder input. One alternative is primarily 765-kV extra-high voltage transmission, another includes 765-kV combined with limited use of highvoltage direct current transmission lines, while the third constitutes a combination of both 345-kV and 765-kV transmission lines. The three alternatives will be evaluated further during the second phase of the study, scheduled for completion during the third quarter of 2010. The Phase One report can be downloaded at

The sponsors retained Quanta Technology LLC to evaluate extra-high voltage transmission alternatives and provide recommendations for new transmission development in the Upper Midwest. In Phase One, Quanta evaluated eight transmission alternatives designed to support the integration of 56.8 gigawatts of nameplate wind generation within the study area including North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Ohio. This translates into enough energy to power more than 15 million households. Quanta assessed and compared transmission alternatives including conducting an economic analysis quantifying the impact and economic benefits of several transmission options.

“Our participation in this and other regional studies is key to ensuring the continued reliability of the electric system grid while also achieving the public policy goals for the integration of greater amounts of renewable energy,” says John Procario, president, chairman and CEO of ATC. “Our approach to transmission planning has increasingly focused on regional issues and benefits. While we continue to analyze the need for improvements on the system within our footprint, we recognize a need to look more broadly across the region. Many regional planning collaborations continue with multiple stakeholders, including utilities, regulators, policy makers, large energy users and others. As these efforts mature, more large-scale infrastructure improvements are being studied to address the needs of the regional marketplace.”

The SMART Study’s goal is to develop a 20-year transmission plan that ensures reliable electricity transport, provides an efficient transmission system to integrate new generators and foster efficient markets, minimizes environmental impacts, and supports state and national energy policies.

Fitchburg – Verona Electric System Upgrade Project Complete

Project will meet the area’s increasing electricity needs

MADISON, Wis. – American Transmission Co. put into service a critical reinforcement to the electric transmission network serving southern Dane and northern Green counties today. The project included building the new Oak Ridge Substation in Fitchburg and constructing approximately six miles of new 138-kilovolt transmission line to connect the new substation to an existing substation in Verona.

“This new infrastructure is providing much needed reinforcement to the transmission system serving the area,” says Charlie Gonzales, ATC local relations representative. “The new line can better accommodate electric load growth in the community, and it creates an alternate path for electricity to flow in the event of an outage on another portion of the network.”

The project was introduced to the public in 2005, approved by the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin in January 2008 and construction began in summer 2008. Construction of the new substation was completed in May 2009, two months ahead of schedule, and the overall project costs will come in under the PSC-approved amount at $18.8 million.

Although construction is completed and the line is in service, some work remains. ATC continues to complete restoration along the right-of-way. “We take great measures to minimize the impact of construction,” says Gonzales. “We want area residents to know we are committed to restoring the corridor.”

“We appreciate the involvement and cooperation of the residents as we worked through the siting and construction of this line,” says Mark Sanzenbacher, ATC project manager.

Note to editors: A map and additional information on the Fitchburg-Verona project is available at

Landgren to retire from American Transmission Co.

PEWAUKEE, Wis. – Dale A. Landgren, vice president and chief strategic officer at American Transmission Co., has announced his retirement, effective Dec. 31, 2010.

As chief strategic officer, Landgren’s responsibilities include planning, federal and regional relations and policy, customer relations and interconnection services. Those functions now will report to other members of the executive team, with Landgren helping make the transition through the remainder of the year.

“As one of the company’s founding executives, Dale played an important role in the development and growth of ATC,” said John Procario, president and chief executive officer. “He guided our strategic planning process, identifying projects and policies that built out our legacy networks into a more robust system, helping the company grow from $550 million in assets to $2.75 billion today.”

Well-respected in the electric transmission industry, Landgren was a significant player in the establishment of the Midwest Independent System Operator. He served on the Management Council of the Midwest ISO from 1996 to 1998 and chaired the Transmission Owners Group from 2000-2002. Landgren has continued to play an important role in the North American Electric Reliability Corp., currently serving as chair of the Midwest Reliability Organization Board and serving on the NERC Member Representative Committee.

Prior to helping establish ATC in 2000, Landgren had a 27-year career at Wisconsin Electric Power Co. (now We Energies), where he was named an officer in 1997.

Landgren earned a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering at Marquette University and a master’s degree in economics from the University of Chicago.