The Illinois Commerce Commission announced Oct. 22, 2014 that it has approved ComEd’s Grand Prairie Gateway Project, a new transmission line that will extend for 60 miles across Ogle, Dekalb, Kane and DuPage Counties. The new line will create immediate customer savings by reducing grid congestion, increasing customers’ access to lower-cost generation, including wind power, and will reduce carbon emissions by 473,000 tons over 15 years. Construction began in the second quarter of 2015 and the line is expected to be in service in 2017.
High voltage electricity is moved across the electric grid by transmission lines. Just like highways that don’t have enough lanes, transmission lines with insufficient capacity become congested, reducing efficiencies and increasing costs of delivering power. PJM Interconnection, the independent regional transmission grid operator and planner for the ComEd service territory, has approved the Grand Prairie Gateway Project as the best solution for addressing current system congestion and ensuring the continued efficient flow of electricity across northern Illinois.
System congestion increases the costs of delivering power to customers. The addition of this new transmission line will allow for more efficient flow of electricity across the grid, alleviating congestion and reducing costs. The proposed line adds a third west-east path across the ComEd territory, which provides ComEd with more options to meet customer needs.
Once in service, the line will create immediate customer savings by reducing grid congestion, increasing customers’ access to lower-cost generation, including wind power, and will reduce carbon emissions by 473,000 tons over 15 years. A detailed analysis indicates that customers will save approximately $250 million collectively within that time frame. This is net of construction costs.
The Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) issued ComEd a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) on October 22, 2014, authorizing ComEd to construct the Grand Prairie Gateway Project.
Other permits or approvals from other federal, state and local entities may be required for the construction of the project, such as a wetland permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. ComEd will obtain all required permits in advance of construction and continue coordinating with agencies, as required, during and after construction.
On October 10, 2013, ComEd completed the third round of public open houses for the Grand Prairie Gateway Project, and we are grateful for the input of the stakeholders, local community leaders and the public throughout this planning process. There are no further events scheduled at this time.
On October 22, 2014, the Illinois Commerce Commission issued ComEd a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to construct, operate and maintain the Grand Prairie Gateway Transmission Line.
ComEd has been engaged in negotiations with landowners with regard to right-of-way acquisition along the approved route since December 2014. For those parcels where rights have not been obtained ComEd filed a Verified Petition with the ICC seeking authority to use eminent domain to acquire certain land rights associated with the Line. For additional information see ICC Docket Numbers 15-0373 and15-0545.
Construction began in June 2015 with construction completion and the line scheduled to be in service by June 2017.
Case Information: All information related to the case including the application, case filings, the case schedule and ICC rulings can be found on the
The new line is scheduled to be in service in 2017. The transmission line will be supported by single-pole steel structures ranging from 115’ to 195’ tall. ComEd anticipates that this project will require the installation of approximately 400 transmission poles, spaced approximately 700 feet apart along the route extending for nearly 60 miles.
Our goal is safety: your families and our personnel. Large trucks, wooden mats, and special equipment can be interesting to children and adults and we urge you to ask questions, but for your safety:
Right-of-way clearing work required to clear the route will continue throughout the year. Right-of-way clearing is necessary to meet clearance regulations and to allow the matting and construction to take place.
As crews begin work in each section of the Project, the first priority is the installation of temporary wooden matting on the ground which allows equipment and work forces to access the construction site, while protecting the sensitive terrain (wetlands, agricultural fields, and underground utilities).
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.
During the installation of the single pole foundations, which average 30 feet in depth, dirt and rock will be excavated. Area residents will see trucks in the area as this material is hauled from the site. In addition, concrete trucks will be delivering concrete to complete the foundations.
It takes 1-3 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.
Through an integrated process incorporating input from the public and other community stakeholders, ComEd has identified a route for the transmission line. The width of the right-of-way that ComEd requires to install the transmission lines may extend up to 220-feet.
The ICC-approved route, as depicted on the maps provided below, is not intended to represent a precise, surveyed width, nor are the maps intended to represent the precise center line of the transmission facilities as those determinations will be made once surveying and design engineering is complete. Like similar projects of this nature at this stage in the process, they are intended only to represent the approximate location of the new transmission line relative to other existing physical features such as roads, railroads and property lines.
Detailed maps showing ComEd’s approved route are now available for download in PDF format.
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In specific areas of the project, weathered steel poles will be installed. This finish is a russet red in color that will change to brown over time.
This type of steel protects the structure and reduces maintenance cost. These poles will not be painted.
Wooden matting is used to protect the environment while installing structures and other equipment.
Drilling of a foundation for poles.
Installation of an anchor bolt cage.
The finished foundation.
Installation of weathering steel poles.
Completed weathered steel poles.
Bird Diverters are installed on existing transmission line.
Pulling rope is installed in advance of transmission wire installation.
Matting in Ogle County to support construction of the new line.
Erection of a weathered steel pole in Ogle County along an existing transmission line.
Staging of wire pulling equipment on the matted road in Ogle County along an existing transmission line.