UPDATE: Construction Starts on First Grand Gateway 345kV Power Pole West of Randall Road

UPDATE: Construction Starts on First Grand Gateway 345kV Power Pole West of Randall Road

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Installation of the first Grand Prairie Gateway electrical pole west of Randall Road started Wednesday (July 22, 2015).

The Grand Prairie Gateway Project is a new 345kV electric transmission line to be constructed between Commonwealth Edison’s existing Byron and Wayne substations, running through Ogle, DeKalb, Kane and DuPage counties. In Kane County, the line runs through parts of St. Charles Township, Plato Township and Burlington Township.

Construction began in the Elgin/Plato Center area in mid-June, starting between Randall Road and Muirhead Road, and the section is scheduled to be completed in late fall 2015, including conductor installation, mat removal and right-of-way restoration.

In all, the $251 million project requires installation of about 400 metal power poles along the 60 miles of rights of way. Each steel pole ranges from 115 feet to 195 feet tall with four steel cross arms and a maximum width of 52 feet.

CREDIT: www.comed.com/

CREDIT: www.comed.com/

The line was approved by the Illinois Commerce Commission in late October. The need for the line was first identified as part of the annual regional planning process managed by PJM, the independent Regional Transmission Organization that operates the ComEd transmission system.

For anyone with questions about the ongoing construction work, ComEd has posted a two-page Grand Prairie FAQ online.

Beginning in late summer/early fall of 2015, construction will move to the South Elgin/Bartlett area between the east side of the Fox River and ComEd’s substation in Wayne. This phase is scheduled to conclude in late spring 2016.

As crews begin work in each section of the project, the first priority is the installation of temporary wooden matting on the ground that simplifies access to the construction site and protects equipment and sensitive terrain (wetlands, agricultural fields, and underground utilities). In Kane County, the matting installation began between Hopps Road and Randall Road in June and then moved west to Nolan, past Bowes Creek Boulevard to Nessler Road.

After matting is completed, sediment controls may be used to slow down the velocity of storm water runoff and trap sediment before it can leave the construction site to prevent soil erosion and protect nearby water ways.

Area residents will see trucks in the area as dirt and rock excavated from the site are hauled away. In addition, concrete trucks will be delivering concrete to complete the single pole foundation, which averages 30 feet in depth.

It takes one to three days to complete the installation of each foundation. ComEd can set the pole a few days after concrete is poured, but it could be up to several weeks between foundation completion and pole setting.

When the foundation is set, the transmission poles will be installed, which can take up to five days to complete.

ComEd will provide additional information as the work proceeds east toward South Elgin and further West toward the Plato Center area.

  • Editor’s note: An earlier version of this article included a stock photo of electric lines and towers, and not a photo of the electric towers under construction. It has been replaced with an image of a monopole from the ComEd website next to a photo provided by ComEd that shows the installation of the pole west of Randall Road.