Construction is underway on the 50-mile Huntley-Wilmarth 345 kilovolt (kV) transmission line connecting Xcel Energy’s Wilmarth Substation, north of Mankato to ITC’s Huntley Substation, south of Winnebago.
Construction crews will continue work this winter on the Huntley-Wilmarth 345 kV transmission line project which is a partnership between Xcel Energy and ITC Midwest. Foundation construction is nearing completion on the project with 273 complete. The remaining 10 foundations will be completed in the spring. The new 50-mile line will run between Xcel Energy’s Wilmarth Substation north of Mankato and ITC Midwest’s Huntley Substation near Winnebago.
The setting of steel structures and installation of wires is underway in the northern one-third of the project, from Mankato to the Watonwan River southwest of Lake Crystal. Approximately 35 percent of the steel structures have been set. Work will continue south, reaching Martin and Faribault Counties in late-January.
A helicopter is assisting work on the project. The helicopter is being used in the wire stringing process, and other operations such as carrying line workers and materials to permanently attach the conductor at most structures. The initial conductor work is at the Minnesota River crossing west of Mankato. The helicopter helps reduce the amount of heavy equipment traffic along the project right of way.
Foundation construction will be complete in the spring of 2021, and the setting of steel structures and installation of wires is underway.
The project area is very busy as trucks move in equipment, concrete, transmission structures and other materials. We aim to keep your family, neighbors and our construction crews safe each day. Please use caution when driving near construction zones. Xcel Energy is taking precautions to stay safe and healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic. To allow crews to do their work, and for everyone’s safety, Xcel Energy is requesting that members of the public not approach them in the field. This helps maintain social distance in accordance with various health and safety guidelines.
May 2020 – Foundation construction began.
June 2020 – Delivery of steel structures to storage facilities
August 2020 – Delivery of structures to right-of-way
November 2020 – Structure setting begins
December 2021 - Project completed and placed-in-service
View the final project route and track progress of construction on the interactive map below. Please type your address in the search box. When you click on a structure location a pop-up will appear giving the status of each structure location. View the project overview map.
The Huntley-Wilmarth project will reduce congestion on the transmission grid in southern Minnesota and northern Iowa and deliver low-cost electricity from generation facilities, including wind farms in the area, to consumers. Learn more about why the project is needed.
The Huntley-Wilmarth project required two approvals from the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (Commission), a certificate of need and a route permit. The Commission determines whether the project is needed and, if it is needed, the route for the project. The Commission determined the project was needed and decided on the appropriate route in June 2019.
All project documents are available on the Commission’s eDockets website. Select “17” in the year field and enter “184” in the number field for the certificate of need or “185” in the number field for the Route Permit. Then click on “search.” Project documents are also available on the Department of Commerce’s website.
Xcel Energy and ITC Midwest representatives will be in touch with landowners as construction work begins. Questions and comments can be directed to the project email and phone number below.
Phone: (toll free) 1-855-839-8865