The Wisconsin Public Service Commission on Sept. 11 told American Transmission Company (ATC) that the company’s request for an extension of time to begin construction on the Boscobel to Lone Rock 69-kV (Line Y124) Rebuild Project is granted.
“Order Condition 17 of the above-stated final decision is revised to require starting date for the subject project by June 1, 2018,” the commission said. “All other conditions of the commission’s September 17, 2016, final decision remain unchanged.”
As TransmissionHub reported, ATC, in an Aug. 30 filing made with the commission, requested an extension until June 2018 to begin construction on the project.
As noted in that filing, the commission granted to ATC a certificate of authority, effective Sept. 17, 2016, to rebuild its 69-kV transmission line between the Boscobel and Lone Rock substations. Condition 17 of the order granting the certificate requires ATC to request an extension and receive approval if construction will not begin within one year of the effective date of the order, the company noted.
ATC said that as described in its application and the commission’s order, the company intended to begin construction in June by starting right of way (ROW) clearing activities. The company noted that currently, it intends to begin construction late this year or early 2018 with ROW clearing.
The requested extension would allow additional time for permitting and easement acquisition, and would better align ROW clearing activities with Order Condition 12, which requires the company to consider modifying its schedule to perform vegetation management activities during winter months when vegetation is dormant, to mitigate impacts.
The company added that the requested extension would not impact the approved project cost or change the planned December 2019 in-service date.
The commission, in its September 2016 final decision, granted, subject to conditions, ATC’s application for authority to rebuild about 25 miles of the existing 69-kV transmission line between the existing Boscobel substation in the city of Boscobel, Grant County, and the Lone Rock substation in the town of Buena Vista, Richland County.
Other than rerouting the line in two segments for a total distance of about nine miles, the existing line will be rebuilt within its existing ROW, the commission said in its decision.
The operating voltage of the line will remain at 69 kV, the commission said. ATC proposes to rebuild about 25 miles of the existing 27.6-mile line, the commission said, adding that the company and its predecessor transmission owner have performed maintenance rebuilding on the remaining 2.6 miles of the line during the past 20 to 30 years. On that section of the line, ATC proposes to selectively replace additional facilities following regular maintenance inspections, the commission said.
As part of the proposed project, ATC will install an optical ground wire for information and protection purposes for the entire 27.6-mile length of the line, the commission said. In areas that will be completely rebuilt, the existing wood pole wishbone structures will be replaced by weathering steel monopole structures, the commission said.
Discussing the project’s need, the commission noted that the line was originally built in 1955, and is about 61 years old. The line is in poor physical condition and is reaching the end of its useful life, the commission said.