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The Southwest Power Pool (SPP) has approved the Elm Creek-to-Summit transmission line project, which is designed to improve the reliability of the high-voltage grid in central Kansas.

ITC Great Plains
will construct approximately one-half of the 60-mile, 345 kV transmission line connecting the ITC Great Plains Elm Creek Substation, approximately four miles northwest of Aurora, to Westar Energy's Summit Substation, about five miles northeast of Assaria.

ITC Great Plains, in partnership with Mid-Kansas Electric Co. LLC (MKEC), will construct the northern portion of the line and co-own and operate this section of the line with MKEC. Westar Energy will build, own and operate the southern half of the line. The project also will involve upgrades at both substations.

"The Elm Creek-to-Summit project will benefit residents and businesses in central Kansas and the broader region by reducing congestion across the transmission network and improving the reliability and efficiency of the grid," says Kristine Schmidt, president of ITC Great Plains.

ITC and Westar will file route applications for their portions of the line with the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) later this spring for review, with rulings on the routes expected later this year. Right-of-way acquisition and engineering design are scheduled for 2014-2015, followed by construction in 2015 and 2016. The line will be energized shortly thereafter.

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