A site near the Astoria Inn in Knox is being used as a middle ground, of sorts, in preparation for the Reynolds-Topeka Transmission Line.
Northern Clearing, the company performing the work, has designated land along U.S. 35 for the outdoor storage of some supplies and equipment.
According to City of Knox Planning Commissioner Bruce Williams, Northern Clearing is working to remove obstructions on a 200 foot right-of-way. That’s in preparation for the construction of the transmission towers and electrical service lines necessary to carry energy across the Midwest.
The project, being undertaken by NIPSCO, spans 100 miles and aims to provide access to lower energy costs. A few environmental benefits may also be seen with the project.
The Reynolds Topeka Transmission Line is one of 17 being constructed around the Midwest. Federal energy standards are all but requiring the work be completed by energy providers.
Knox happens to be designated as a center point in the project. The area storing equipment and supplies in Knox allows workers clearing the right-of-way a place to meet prior to traveling to their work sites each day.
Williams anticipates it will take several months of work to complete any clearing required for the construction of the transmission line. NIPSCO has been working for some time to propose a transmission line route, meet with farmers, and compensate them for possible losses prior to construction.
Once Northern Clearing has completed its work, equipment at the site will be removed.