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Southeast Reliability Project

Project Overview

In the past few years, energy demand has increased in southeast Kansas. Recent studies of the transmission system have identified the need for new power lines connecting to Frontenac and Pittsburg. Westar will upgrade the Franklin substation, construct a new substation near Sugar Creek Packing Co., Inc., and build new transmission lines that will run through these cities. The planned project will improve energy capacity and ensure a more reliable power supply to the businesses and residents of both cities.

The map at right shows the existing transmission lines in blue and brown, the selected route in red and the new substation to be built in red. Although the cost will be reevaluated when the preferred route is determined, the initial estimated investment for the project is $25 million.

Project Benefits
  • New substation and upgrading existing substations
  • New power source from Franklin Substation
  • Improve electric system reliability overall
  • Enable further economic growth
  • Strengthen the regional transmission grid
  • Provide tax revenue, construction jobs and local expenditures
  • Expand capabilities for future investment in area industry
Project Timeline
Summer 2016 Fall 2016 Spring 2018 Fall 2018
Route determined. Easement acquisition and route preparation.  Construction begins on the substation. Construction continues on the transmission lines and substations. Project completed and in service.
Route Selection

Westar has contracted with outside experts to perform an evaluation of the area. This evaluation is intended to minimize adverse impacts to residents, their land, and the natural environment while providing a technically viable and cost-effective transmission line route.

Potential routes were developed by defining routes that would technically work and then looking for those that minimize social and environmental impacts and are economically reasonable. Input received from residents in the area helped us determine which of these routes should be selected for construction.

About the Line

The route has been determined through an open house process. The routes will have the following structures:

  • Wood poles
  • Weatherized and galvanized steel poles
  • Between 100 and 120 feet tall
  • Spacing between each pole will be between 400 and 700 feet (shorter spans within city limits)
Keeping You Informed

We thank you for your interest in the project. Kari West and RJ Jubber are available to help you as your dedicated Westar representatives for this project. You may reach Kari at (620) 235-2503 or by email at RJ may be reached (620) 235-2501 or by email at

Helpful resources section header photo