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July 6, 2020

6/9/2020 9:04:00 AM
Cardinal-Hickory Creek gets IUB approval, eyes 2021 start

The Cardinal-Hickory Creek project got one more nod last week when the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) approved the 14 mile Iowa transmission line segment of the project for ITC Midwest and Dairyland Power Cooperative.
The IUB's unanimous approval completes years of public involvement and regulatory review and allows construction of the Hickory Creek substation near New Vienna in Dubuque County northward to Clayton County, and then cross the Mississippi River near Cassville, Wisconsin.
The entire project is approximately 100-miles of 345-kilovolt transmission line designed to electrically connect the Dubuque County, Iowa, region to the Dane County, Wisconsin, region. In Wisconsin, ITC Midwest will be responsible for the segment of line from the Mississippi River to a new substation near Montfort, Wisconsin, to be built by American Transmission Co. (ATC), the third utility involved in the project. ATC will also be responsible for the remainder of the line to Dane County.
Last September, the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin issued a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity and selected the route for the Wisconsin portion of the project. Additional regulatory approvals have been obtained from federal agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, for permission for the line to cross the Mississippi River. Final permitting from these federal agencies has been received or is in process.
"We are pleased that the Iowa Utilities Board recognized the need for and benefits of this project. This project will help expand system capacity and respond to consumer demands for more cost-effective, renewable energy sources for electricity users in the region," said ITC Midwest President Dusky Terry. "Since we introduced this project in 2014, there has been a tremendous amount of public involvement. We sincerely appreciate the public's constructive input prior to filing the project application, and throughout the entire Iowa Utilities Board franchise process."
"Dairyland's cooperative members-and energy users across the region-depend on a reliable, safe transmission system," said Dairyland Chief Operating Officer Ben Porath. "The Cardinal-Hickory Creek line will help satisfy that essential need in a changing energy environment, while supporting renewable resources and delivering substantial benefits to consumers."
As a portion of one of 17 Multi-Value Projects approved by the region's Midcontinent Independent System Operator in 2011, the cost and benefits of the Cardinal-Hickory Creek project are distributed throughout the multi-state northern MISO region. ITC Midwest is coordinating the project's construction in Iowa and has been working with local landowners since the initial Iowa Utilities Board public information meetings on the project held March 2018 in Peosta and Guttenberg. Now that Iowa Utilities Board approval for the project has been granted, ITC Midwest will begin contacting Iowa property owners along the route in the coming months to discuss construction activities. Construction is expected to begin in 2021 to meet an in-service date of 2023.

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