ST. LOUIS, Feb. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Today's decision by the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) clears the way for the nearly 400-mile-long Illinois Rivers electric transmission project that will create jobs, facilitate the delivery of low-cost power and improve the reliability and efficiency of the electric power grid.
Ameren Transmission Company of Illinois (ATXI), a wholly owned subsidiary of Ameren Corporation (NYSE: AEE), has received siting approval of final routes and substations from the ICC to build the estimated $1.1 billion Illinois Rivers transmission project. This is Ameren's largest-ever transmission project and the longest single transmission line project in Illinois history.
"Today's action by the ICC is welcome news for Illinois," said Maureen Borkowski, chairman, president and chief executive officer of ATXI. "This project will benefit the state's economy, create jobs and provide Illinois electricity customers greater access to a variety of low-cost energy sources, including wind energy."
Last August, the ICC approved the need for the project and some of the project routes and substations. Today, the ICC resolved all remaining routes and substation location issues. The 345,000-volt transmission line, using steel poles with a single shaft, will run from Palmyra, Mo., crossing the Mississippi River at Quincy. It will then run east past Meredosia, Pawnee, Pana, Mt. Zion and Kansas, ending at Sugar Creek, Ind., with additional lines running from Meredosia to Ipava and between the Sidney and Rising substations near Champaign. Following last August's action by the ICC, ATXI began the real estate process on those portions of the project with final route approval, including surveying work and negotiations with landowners to secure 150-foot-wide easements. Substation construction is already underway. Line construction is expected to commence later this year.
The project previously received approvals from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc. (MISO), a regional transmission organization serving a 15-state region and the Canadian province of Manitoba.
Ameren Transmission Company of Illinois is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ameren Corporation dedicated to electric transmission infrastructure investment, expanding Ameren's already robust transmission system of more than 7,500 circuit miles of high-voltage transmission lines in Illinois and Missouri.
St. Louis-based Ameren Corporation powers the quality of life for 2.4 million electric customers and more than 900,000 natural gas customers in a 64,000-square-mile area through its Ameren Missouri and Ameren Illinois rate-regulated utility subsidiaries. Ameren Illinois provides electric and natural gas delivery service while Ameren Missouri provides vertically integrated electric service, with generating capacity of 10,300 megawatts, and natural gas delivery service. Ameren Transmission of Illinois develops regional electric transmission projects. Follow the company on Twitter @AmerenCorp. For more information, visit Ameren.com.