ITC Great Plains said Phase I of the 345-kV Spearville-Axtell high-voltage transmission project, also known as the Kansas Electric Transmission Authority (KETA) Project, is in service, with final testing completed in June.
Specifically, the 89-mile segment from Spearville, Kan., to the Post Rock substation northwest of Hays, Kan., is transmitting energy as part of the regional high-voltage grid, meaning additional transmission capacity is available between Hays and Dodge City, which are two of the major demand centers in western Kansas, the company said in its July newsletter.
Construction on Phase II, the 85-mile segment from Post Rock to the Nebraska border, is set to be complete by the end of the year, an ITC Holdings spokesperson told TransmissionHub July 17.
ITC Great Plains is a subsidiary of ITC Grid Development, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of ITC Holdings (NYSE:ITC).
ITC Great Plains said almost all of the foundations for the transmission structures have been prepared as part of Phase II, and crews have erected all of the steel monopoles through Ellis, Rooks and Osborne counties in Kansas. The wires are being strung in Osborne County, Kan.
ITC Great Plains also said it is building the line to the Nebraska border and the Nebraska Public Power District is building the final segment from the state line to Axtell, Neb.
“Our initial estimate for the cost of the entire project from Spearville…to the Nebraska border was $200m – that was revised a while ago to $175m and that’s being evaluated as we speak, so there may be an updated estimate soon,” the spokesperson said.
According to the company, the line will run about 225 miles from Spearville north to the Post Rock substation near Hays, then on across the Nebraska border to Axtell. It will be built in three segments: Spearville to Hays; Hays to the Kansas-Nebraska border; and from that border to Axtell.
The Kansas Corporation Commission approved the route for Phase I in July 2009, and the Phase II route was approved in June 2010, the company added.
KETA identified the line as a project that will bring significant economic and reliability benefits to Kansas and the regional grid, the company said, noting that the line will ease congestion across the transmission network, addressing the lack of high-voltage transmission lines in central and western Kansas.