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ComEd representatives met with the Village managers from the coalition of communities formed to oppose the proposed West Central Reliability Project on February 21, 2017, to discuss alternatives for its proposed high-voltage power line through Roselle along the south side of I-390, and what the costs would be to those alternatives.
Several alternative options identified by ComEd included installing the line from Bartlett to Itasca on shorter but more frequent poles, creating redundancies from other Bartlett substations, installing the line in an underground conduit, and installing the line in an underground tunnel. ComEd states that these options are all much more expensive than the utility’s original proposal to install the 138kV overhead transmission line.
Officials from ComEd reiterated that they are required by state statute to pursue the least cost option for the project, but they are willing to delay the project while the coalition of communities continues to identify funding sources for the higher cost alternative of undergrounding the project. ComEd officials indicated that they will not move forward with the approval process for the West Central Reliability Project until after they reengage officials from the coalition communities in September 2017, when they will discuss additional funding options or other alternatives to what has been proposed.
Under ComEd’s new proposed schedule, the utility said that it would file with the Illinois Commerce Commission for approval for the project sometime in 2018. The new proposed timeline calls for construction of the project to run in late 2018 through 2019. In the interim, the coalition of communities will continue its opposition of the original proposal for the project by seeking legislative options and working to identify alternative funding sources for the undergrounding of the line.
More information about the proposed project is available on the ComEd West Central Reliability Project page.