Construction crews have been working since early July to bring a natural gas pipeline to the Lake of the Ozarks, and now it's here.
Summit Natural Gas finished testing a portion of its steel pipe line Jan. 28, and has declared the line ready for use.
"The first 35 miles of our steel line that runs from Lincoln and follows the power line easement has been pressure tested and is running as it should be" Director of Missouri Business Development Bret Brown explains. "With gas live, we will begin conversions on Feb. 4."
The first phase that is going live covers the Gravois Mills, Laurie and Sunrise Beach areas.
Julie Zorn, manager of Missouri Business Development, is confident that having live gas will boost interest around the lake area. "We have had people who are interested in switching to natural gas and have, and then we have had those people who weren't so convinced that we could actually bring live gas here" says Zorn. "Well now it's here and I think that those who had their doubts won't be so hesitant about switching anymore."
Summit currently has over 2,000 customers signed up around the lake area and hopes to have close to 4,800 by the end of 2013.
In addition to completing testing, boring under the lake at the Niangua bridge was also completed and crews have moved their equipment to the next lake bore. Once they begin, the bore should be completed in three weeks. Throughout the course of the project, the lake will be bored three times; at the Niangua, Community and Hurricane Deck bridges.
Construction is currently underway in the remaining schedules of Camdenton, Linn Creek, Osage Beach and Lake Ozark.
"We are currently on schedule with all of the construction. The weather we have had over the last few months has drastically helped the crews in making great progress on the pipe line" says Bert Stefanic, Project Manager. "If everything continues to go as well as it has been, we will have live gas in our remaining schedules by the heating season of 2013/2014."
With live gas now available, Summit hopes that it will spark excitement and growth in the lake area.
"This is a monumental accomplishment for Summit. The Lake of the Ozarks is an area that we have been looking at bringing natural gas to for several years" says Brown. "We've been told by so many people in this area that bringing gas here would be impossible, but we've accomplished a feat that so many said we couldn't."