Grain Belt Express Reveals Proposed Transmission Route

By Alan Van Zandt | avanzandt@kq2.com

Published 03/26 2014 09:19PM

Updated 03/27 2014 08:07AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Wednesday Grain Belt Express revealed its proposed route for transmission lines it wants to install throughout Missouri.

It's a map that looks different than previous drafts. The energy company heard more than 3,500 comments from area landowners and made adjustments before finalizing the plan.

"We've made modifications, based on the feedback to improve that route," said Mark Lawlor, a spokesman for Grain Belt Energy. "If we can get it on one side of a treeline or the other or farther away from a residence than we had it before, we made some of those adjustments."

With the feedback, Grain Belt made some changes to the route that had originally been presented to landowners. In the new plan, some that were originally out of the path of the transmission line are now in it.

"When we provided the route network, we notified a zone of landowners around that network," Lawlor said. "We explained at the meetings that these are proposals only subject to changes and adjustments based on the feedback we get."

Wednesday was the first day of public input for the latest map. Gary Laderoute of northern Buchanan County went to check it out.

"If it was going to cross some of my property or went across the middle of my property, I'd have an issue with it," Laderoute said.

The Missouri portion of the overhead transmission line is just one piece of the puzzle of transmitting electricity generated at a wind farm in western Kansas 750 miles away to Indiana.

"When folks understand what we are trying to accomplish how we are going about it," Lawlor said. "We are willing to work with them on adjustments to the route that minimizes impacts. I think that's been well received."

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