Utility regulators in Missouri have signed off on a 100-mile transmission line across five counties in the northeast part of the state.
Ameren transmission Co. of Illinois will build the $250 million Mark twin Transmission Project line with construction starting in April. It should be operational by the end of 2019.
“Approval of the Mark Twin Transmission Project is a significant step toward strengthening our region’s energy grid and delivering customer benefits,” said Shawn E. Schukar, chairman and president of ATXI.
The company ran into fierce opposition with its original plan of acquiring new right of way in Marionh, Knox, Shelby, Adair and Schuyler counties to build a new 345,000-volt line from Palmyra to Kirksville. Lawsuits stalled the project for nearly a year.
The lawsuits prompted the company to announce a new route last May with about 90 percent of its following the right of way of existing power lines maintained by Northeast Electric Power Cooperative and Ameren Missouri.
The new route means ATXI will avoid having to acquire a large amount of new right of way in areas where there was significant opposition.
One of the main opponents, Neighbors United Against Ameren’s Powerline agreed it would not oppose the new route. It withdrew as an intervenor in the case last month.