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October 22, 2010

News

Power to Ranges project to begin next spring

Electrical power will be available at all the ranges/training facilities that surround Fort McCoy’s North Impact Area by the end of 2011.

The project to provide electrical power to the remaining ranges that don’t have power will start in spring 2011, according to Roy Brewer, resident engineer for the Army Corps of Engineer branch office at Fort McCoy.

The $2.7 million project recently was awarded to Xcel Energy and Bloom Companies LLC of Milwaukee.

Xcel Energy, Fort McCoy’s energy provider, will install the primary electricity connections to the transformers. Bloom will install the secondary electricity connections and take the electricity from the transformers and extend it to the range buildings, targets, etc. The project is paid for by Military Construction, Army Reserve funding.

Terry Hoff, Fort McCoy Range officer, said the project will bring power to Ranges 6 (the Infantry Squad Battle Course), 10 (Reflexive), 12 (Light Anti-Tank), 17 (Squad Defense), and 18 (Gun Truck Gunnery).

Other ranges in the area previously were connected to electrical power in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and include Ranges 1, 2, 26, and 30-35.

“The project will eliminate the use of generators, which are environmentally unfriendly, on these ranges,” Hoff said. “Electrical power is more convenient, more reliable and easier to maintain.”

Electrical power will eliminate power surges and be friendlier to such things as hard-wired targets, computers, lights, transformers and radios, he said. In addition to being less expensive, electrical power will reduce downtime for repairs, maintenance, etc. It also will help reduce manpower needed to place and remove generators and will be quieter than generators.

“Electrical power will be more suitable to us having more permanent structures on the ranges, which will improve training opportunities and comfort for troops in winter and inclement weather,” Hoff said.

The project should not affect any training opportunities, he said. The work should be completed to support training in time for calendar year 2012 training.

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