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Project’s transmission towers will be built in Webster

Much of the work to build a high-voltage transmission line between the Big Stone power plant and Ellenedale, N.D., will be done in Webster.

That means a boost for the Day County seat and the surrounding area, local officials said.

Otter Tail Power and Montana-Dakota Utilities are building the 162-mile transmission line, and recently announced that the project’s 90-acre laydown yard will be in Webster. It will be built north of Commercial Lane in the Webster Industrial Park. Big Stone South to Ellendale will also have three or four offices and a meeting area in the Lake Region Business Center on Main Street in Webster, according to information from the Webster Area Development Corp. The needed renovations are expected to be done by the end of the year.

Tom Sannes, president of the development corporation, said Otter Tail will build the electrical towers needed for the transmission line at the yard in Webster. And, he said, it could be used for moreindustrial projects in the future.

Once the poles are finished, they will be moved to where they’re needed along the route, Sannes said. The project needs 753 towers, 236 of which will be placed in Day County, according to the development corporation.

Laydown yards are also used to store equipment.

“It’s a good opportunity for Day County,” Sannes said. “Anytime that we can have industry locate in our area for an extended period of time there should be, and I expect, economic advantages. You never know what can spin off with these types of projects, you never know what may happen.”

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Otter Tail Power Co. and Montana-Dakota Utilities will pay an estimated $535,000 to $755,000 in annual property taxes to Day County, according to the development corporation.

The utilities have been planning the line since 2008. It’s estimated cost is about $330 million, officials from the companies have previously said.

“There will be a lot of activity coming for the next three years,” Webster Mayor Mike Grosek said. “Economically, it will be very big for this city and this area.”

Local officials expect that businesses that offer lodging, food, fuel and other goods and services will see an uptick in business.

Grosek expects the the boost to the economy to show up after the first of the year.

The line is expected to cut through 63 miles of Brown County with that investment estimated to be about $100 million, utility officials have said.

Work on the transmission line, that will connect two new substations, is expected to be done in 2019.

(c)2015 the American News (Aberdeen, S.D.)

This article was written by Shannon Marvel from American News, Aberdeen, S.D. and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.