ComEd sets high-voltage line routes, awaits OK
By Janelle Walker For Sun-Times Media October 10, 2013 4:16PM
Updated: November 12, 2013 6:28AM
ST. CHARLES — Routes have been chosen for a new, high-voltage power line proposed by ComEd for between Byron and Wayne, and if approved by the Illinois Commerce Commission, construction could start late next year.
A third open house to show residents who might live near the lines — or who have other concerns about its placement — was held Wednesday at the Kane County Fairgrounds.
ComEd is looking to route new high-power electric transmission lines connecting substations in Byron and Wayne. This week’s open house was the third of three planned in communities along the proposed routes.
Views of the final two proposed routes — a primary and secondary option — with maps broken down by county and township can be found on the ComEd website. ComEd employees were using those maps Wednesday to show residents where the lines may run in relationship to their homes, farms and other concerns they may have.
Through Kane County, the proposed route would jog west and north of the Wayne substation, then run along the Stearns Road corridor and existing railroad tracks until about Plato Center. The two proposed routes then split to run either north or south of Plato Center.
Once the proposal is submitted by ComEd, the ICC has 225 days to approve or deny the request — putting final notice in about July 2014, said David O’Dowd, ComEd spokesman,
The ICC could recommend the utility use either the primary or alternate route — or deny the request altogether, O’Dowd said. If that were the case, he added, ComEd would start over with a new proposal.
ComEd and PJM, the 13-state regional transmission organization that oversees future electric grid expansion, say the lines are needed to solve congestion in the current grid, according to ComEd’s informational materials.
Electricity users would see a resulting decrease in the cost of providing electricity, he added.
“Customer supply costs would decrease as well,” he said.
ComEd is still taking comments on the two proposed routes, O’Dowd said, either through the website or via phone.
The maps can be seen at www.comed.com/about-us/economic-development/reliability/Pages/project-maps.aspx.