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Sharyland seeks wind line approval  

Credit:  By Kevin Welch, Amarillo Globe-News, amarillo.com 12 November 2010 ~~

Sharyland Utilities is starting the approval process for another segment of the wind-energy transmission line system in the Panhandle while Cross Texas Transmission has reached agreements with property owners on one of its routes.

The Sharyland segment, set to run from near Silverton to outside Panhandle, will cost about $101 million if the Public Utility Commission approves Sharyland’s preferred route.

Officials at the PUC will have 13 routes to choose from, or they can create one of their own.

The alternatives from Sharyland run from 62 to 88 miles with the preferred route coming in at 65 miles long, according to the testimony of Mark Caskey, senior vice president at Sharyland.

The company filed the testimony Wednesday with its application to the PUC.

Lattice towers will stand every 1,000 to 1,200 feet in a right of way about 175 feet across. They will be 125 feet tall.

The company relied on opinions from two community meetings at which it took public comment from at least 100 people.

“Sharyland balanced the environmental and land use analysis with its engineering judgment, transmission planning considerations, public input and community values,” Caskey testified.

Acquisition of right of way should begin immediately upon PUC approval, which is expected in May. That acquisition should cost about $3.5 million, according to testimony by Mark Meyer, project engineer.

Sharyland is scheduling construction to begin in October. The lines should be energized by September 2013.

Also connecting to the future substation near Silverton will be Cross Texas Transmission lines running to near Childress.

CTT filed notice Wednesday it has reached a compromise with interested parties for that route’s location.

The PUC should approve that route, or choose another, by January, said CTT Director of Project Development Cameron Fredkin.

The company filed its application for a route in July. It plans to mostly use single pole structures rather than lattice towers, in part because landowners prefer them, according to the company.

The monopoles are, however, more expensive, coming in about 1.2 times the cost of lattice towers per mile.

The proposed route would be about 80 miles long and cost $130 million.

The only Panhandle route that has gotten final PUC approval is a Cross Texas line running from Childress to Lefors.

Source:  By Kevin Welch, Amarillo Globe-News, amarillo.com 12 November 2010

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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