MASON CITY — Plans to build two electrical substations and a transmission line in North Iowa are expected to bring millions of dollars to the area.
ITC Midwest plans to build the transmission line, which will travel through Cerro Gordo, Franklin, Worth, Winnebago and Kossuth counties. New substations will be in Cerro Gordo and Kossuth counties.
“We’re unsure exactly how much of an investment it will be, but it will be millions of dollars,” said Tom Petersen, director of communications for ITC Midwest, which is based out of Cedar Rapids. “The good news for communities is it’s all taxable.”
The project is part of 17 multi-value project (MVP) transmission lines identified by Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator (MISO), the regional independent transmission planning organization.
ITC Midwest, which purchased Alliant Energy’s transmission lines in 2007, received authorization from MISO in 2011 to start on the project.
The goal is to improve reliability and capacity, and to allow for optimal use of wind energy resources, Petersen said.
“As far as feedback ... they’re really excited for the project,” said Lori Broghammer, area manager of local government and community affairs.
One of the first phases is building two substations near Mason City and rebuilding a transmission line from the Cerro Gordo-Worth county line to just south of Mason City.
One substation will be located north of Mason City and the other across the road from Alliant Energy’s power plant south of town, said Jim Spicer, senior project engineer. Land has been purchased for both substations.
“We like to secure the end points first,” he said, and then build the transmission lines.
The exact course of the transmission line has yet to be determined, but ITC Midwest is trying to place it along an existing line, which would make it a double-circuit transmission line, Spicer said.
“It will depend on landowners,” he said.
A meeting with Cerro Gordo County landowners is scheduled for 10 a.m. May 13 at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 551 S. Taft Ave., Mason City.
Once easement negotiations are completed, ITC Midwest hopes to start transmission line construction at the beginning of 2014 and have it in service by the end of 2014.
Phase one of the substation north of Mason City will be built in 2014 with phase two in 2015. The second substation will be built in 2015-16, Spicer said.
The rest of the transmission line and substation in Kossuth County will be built in following years.
MidAmerican Energy will own and build part of the line in Franklin County, Spicer said.
Additional landowner meetings will be held this summer and later in the year.