Xcel Proposes Northern Wisconsin Transmission Line

Xcel Proposes Northern Wisconsin Transmission Line

Xcel Energy is proposing a new 22-mile, 34.5-kilovolt transmission line at the tip of northern Wisconsin. The roughly $26 million project is necessary to strengthen power in the area, according to the company.

Xcel Energy has one transmission line providing power to the Bayfield Peninsula which was installed during the 1950s, said project manager Chris Buboltz. He said it’s difficult to maintain the line or restore power during outages because it’s not easy to access.

“We’re just not able to do those maintenance and those refurbishment projects because we can’t take the line out to do them because people will be out of power,” he said.

Buboltz said they’ve seen outages ranging from four to eight hours in the area due to accessibility and safety issues. Xcel’s proposed line would include installing poles within the first 5 feet of a landowner’s property line. Around 130 private landowners would be impacted by the project along with 7.5 miles of county forest land. Town of Washburn resident Roy Settgas said the new line would cross his property which doesn’t bother him. But, he said it’s drawing concern for some landowners and requests for more consideration of the proposed route. Buboltz said Xcel is delaying its timeline to start the permitting process with the Wisconsin Public Service Commission, which the company had set to begin in October. He said Xcel wants to talk with more people about the project and why they feel it’s needed.

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