Black Hills Energy replaces old line to give Rapid City customers reliable energy

A 55-year-old transmission line is being replaced and this project could potentially be increasing customers' bills.
Published: Jul. 7, 2020 at 7:23 PM CDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - Black Hills Energy is rebuilding an old, 8-mile transmission line to create more reliable energy for their customers in Rapid City.

Fifty-five years is how old an electric transmission line is in Rapid City.

Black Hills Energy says it's time to go out with the old and in with the new.

“So we test poles as they get to a certain age they start to have rot or other degradation items as well. Not only the pole itself but other hardware items,” Marc Eyre, Black Hills Energy VP of SD Electric Operations, said.

This could potentially cause outages.

Starting June 15, Black Hills Energy mobilized a contractor to get the land ready to install poles.

Seventy-five contractors will help replace the 8-mile transmission line running from north of I-90 to a substation off Catron Boulevard.

This could affect any of the customers in the 110 parcels of land.

Pre-construction is already happening along the first two miles leading to the intersection of Omaha Street and Mountain View Road.

In September, poles will be installed and service will be cut off and energy will return in November.

Customers will not struggle to turn on the lights as their energy will be shifted to other poles temporarily.

The project is expected to cost $5.5 million and that means you could potentially see an increase on your bill. An adjustment of an extra 38 cents.

“It all depends on the total cost that comes in but is estimated right now of minimal impact of about 38 cents per month,” Eyre said.

The second phase will start around September and the project is set to be completed by March 2021.

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