Cardinal Hickory Creek Project | PSC Docket ID: 5-CE-146

 Cardinal-Hickory Creek Project Information

Project Summary

    • Applicant's Stated Need: The Applicants state that the proposed project would provide substantial net economic, reliability, and public policy benefits to Wisconsin, Iowa, and the region. The applicants also state that the project would provide flexibility for the regional transmission system to respond to the ever-changing energy markets and generation portfolios.

    • Estimated Cost: The total project cost, including the portions that would be paid for by the entire MISO region, is between $492M and $543M, depending on the route chosen for the transmission line, but the entire cost would not be borne by Wisconsin customers. If the project is approved, Wisconsin customers will pay for approximately $66M to $72M of the total project costs (depending on the route chosen); the rest of the projects costs would be shared by the rest of the MISO region.

    • Project Timeline: ATC anticipates commencing substation construction in October 2020 and transmission line construction in October 2021, and placing the transmission line and substation in service in December 2023.

    • Project Location (see map): ATC has developed a Preferred Route and other route segments for this project. In Wisconsin, the proposed routes would cross the Mississippi River near Cassville, WI, and travel to the existing Cardinal Substation in Middleton, Dane County.

      • Mississippi River Crossing to a new Substation in Hill Valley (Montfort, WI): The Preferred Route is approximately 34 miles in length and passes through Grant County. The Alternate Route is approximately 52 miles in length and passes through Grant, Lafayette, and Iowa counties.

      • From a new Hill Valley Substation (Montfort, WI) to the Cardinal Substation (Middleton, WI): The Preferred Route is approximately 53 miles in length and the Alternate Route is approximately 50.3 miles in length. Both routes pass through Grant, Iowa, and Dane counties.
    Opportunities for Public Participation
    Opportunities for public involvement in this proceeding will include hearings, comment periods, and public meetings. A listing of the dates and locations will be provided when available.


    The Draft EIS comment period is open until 04/14/2019. 

  • Submit a comment online
  • View the Draft EIS (February 2019)

  • To obtain a copy of the draft EIS in another format (paper,cd,etc.), please contact the EIS coordinator, Cindy Burtley, at (608) 267-6718 or

    For more information on becoming involved in the Commission review of construction cases, please visit our public participation page, or call one of the Project contacts listed below.

    Statutory Review

    This is a Type I project under Wis. Admin. Code § PSC 4.10(1). The Commission and the Department of Natural Resources will jointly prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for this project.

    • A draft EIS will be issued in early 2019.
    • There will be a 45-day comment period after the draft EIS is issued.
    • Comments received will be used to prepare a final EIS, which is anticipated to be issued in Spring, 2019.
    • The final EIS will be one subject of a hearing in the project area to be held later in the review process.

    PSC transmission line review process overview (pdf).

    Project Contacts

    Additional Project Resources: