Thursday, December 3, 2015

Webster secures primary laydown yard and office for BSSE project

Webster Area Development Corporation (WADC) is pleased to announce that Webster will play a large part in the 2016-2019 construction of the Big Stone South to Ellendale (BSSE) Transmission Line by Otter Tail Power Company and Montana-Dakota Utilities Co.

“This is a great opportunity for Day County,” said Tom Sannes, WADC board president. “The county will receive thousands of dollars in new property tax revenue annually, and the construction will create new job opportunities and boost the local economy.”

The BSSE project’s primary construction “laydown” yard will be located on the 90 acres north of Commerce Lane in Webster Industrial Park. With the help of City of Webster and Webster Scale, WADC recently constructed a new road to provide direct access to SD Hwy-25, which will not only be advantageous for BSSE but also for future development of the industrial park.

 “We are thrilled that Otter Tail Power Company and Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. have chosen Webster to host their main laydown yard and offices,” said Melissa Waldner, WADC executive director. “Webster has the perfect location and amenities to accommodate the needs of the BSSE project and its staff.”

In addition, the Lake Region Business Center will host the BSSE field office at 1209 Main Street, Webster, including 3-4 offices and a large meeting area for frequent project meetings. Renovations will be completed by the end of the year.

Construction of the new 345-kV transmission line will include the installation of 753 single-pole structures. The line will cross 162 miles to connect two new substations in Big Stone City, SD, and Ellendale, ND. Right-of-way land preparations began this fall, and construction will ramp up in 2016 for about two years. Planning has been ongoing since 2008 for the transmission line, estimated to cost between $293-370 million.

Webster Scale was recently selected as the successful bidder to construct the main laydown yard in Webster Industrial Park as well as the two smaller laydown yards near Milbank and Frederick. Webster Scale will also serve as the road access contractor throughout the project area.

As owners of the BSSE line, Otter Tail Power Company and Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. estimate they will pay Day County between $535,000-755,000 annually for property taxes after purchasing land rights to install 236 structures in rural Day County. The companies will also boost area schools through tax payments.

“The City of Webster welcomes all from the BSSE project to the community!” said Mayor Mike Grosek. “Webster has become busier each year with new businesses and community projects. We are fortunate to add a multi-million dollar project like BSSE to the mix.”

Local businesses that provide lodging, meals, fuel and other consumer goods and services will see an increase in traffic and sales during the construction period due to new workers in town as well as managers visiting for meetings at the Business Center.

WADC will partner with Webster Area Chamber of Commerce and City of Webster to provide welcome guides to all contractors and workers involved in the BSSE project.

“The Webster Area Development Corporation has been proactive on this project,” said Cris Oehler, project spokesperson and Vice President of Public Relations at Otter Tail Power Company. “They understand the value the project will bring to the area and have been advocates for their community and its resources. We appreciate their welcome and assistance, and we look forward to continuing this partnership.”

For more information, visit or call 1-888-283-4678.