PSO Announces Its Wind Catcher Project Won't Go Through Bixby

Amy Kauffman, News on 6

PSO says its Wind Catcher energy project will now take a different route through Tulsa County that avoids Bixby.

The announcement came during Bixby’s City Council meeting, where hundreds of residents showed up to hear an update.

PSO says engineers have been working on finding alternate routes all along, and this past weekend they finally found one that won’t go through Bixby.

Landowner Maurice Storm says the original proposed transmission line would have gone 600 feet from his house.

Even though the alternate route will be several miles away, he is still uneasy about the project.

“You think it’s still going to get built somewhere and I feel worse about that than I thought I would,” he said.

PSO says they’ve established a new plan staying within an existing right-of-way.

“We kept trying to figure out a way to make it work and the engineers, just this week, were able to figure out a way,” said Stuart Solomon, the president of PSO.

6/19/2018 Related Story: Bixby Hires Attorney To Fight PSO's Wind Catcher Project

Many landowners, who recently filed a motion opposing the entire project, are wondering how a new solution just recently came to the table.

“They want to throw this alternate route out there without having the opportunity to ask questions,” said Bixby resident Robert Dixon.

PSO says they will replace larger structures with smaller ones.

“The structures will be lower profile than the ones there today, so I think it’s a great solution,” said Solomon.

PSO says the new technology will be more expensive, but they’ve already promised the Oklahoma Corporation Commission they will keep costs as low as possible.

Solomon said PSO “will work very hard to make sure everything we do falls within that cost cap.”

But the Bixby City Council and several landowners say they want this in writing before they move on.

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission is set to discuss rate increases for customers to help pay for the project at next Monday’s meeting.