Crown Corporation Utility Locations
Res #: 22-20A
Responses Received: Yes
Departments: Saskatchewan Ministry of Crown Corporations
WHEREAS Crown corporations provide needed utility services to private lands throughout Saskatchewan;
WHEREAS development setbacks are put in place from underground and overhead utilities;
WHEREAS when utility lines are not located within dedicated right-of-ways, future development is restricted by these setbacks or becomes more costly due to utility relocates;
BE IT RESOLVED that SARM lobby the Government of Saskatchewan to ensure that where possible Crown corporations locate utilities within established right of ways, or within 30 meters of established right of ways to limit future development restrictions and costs.
Responses From: The Ministry Responsible for Crown Investments Corporation
April 20, 2020
The following information has been provided by SaskPower, SaskEnergy and SaskTel:
The Power Corporation Act gives SaskPower the legislated right to construct power lines in the road allowance. The Rural Rebuild Program involves moving existing 14,400 to 25,000-volt overhead lines from pasture and cultivated lands to road allowances and is based on the need to replace aging infrastructure, improve reliability, increase operational efficiencies, and improve public safety.
SaskPower will not build overhead distribution power lines in fields to avoid creating new hazards and will only build them within road allowances. To ensure the safety of vehicular traffic along the municipal roadways, SaskPower prefers to build on a 100-foot road allowance rather than a 66-foot road allowance. Typically, distribution lines are constructed 0.5 metres within the road allowance.
Wherever feasible, SaskEnergy works to corridor existing features such as pipelines, utilities, roads and property lines in order to minimize disturbances and impacts to current and future land users.
When planning gas line routes, SaskEnergy considers information gathered through a public engagement process, which includes landowners and stakeholders such as local First Nations and the Government of Saskatchewan. Routing options are thoroughly examined in order to identify and consider:
- landowner impact;
- future land use and development;
- environmental factors; and
- the ability to provide safe and reliable natural gas.
Future development plans are also considered, including rural municipality official community plans and engagement with local communities.
- SaskTel already supports this resolution except where other considerations make the path not feasible. This can include environmental, heritage, technical, geographical/hydrological, economical concerns and/or the existence of other utilities or design barriers.
- SaskTel prefers to place its assets in existing right of ways (i.e. roadways) or within existing or new easements obtained within an RM’s road setback rules to avoid future development restrictions.
- RM’s often cite possible future road widening as a concern that forces SaskTel to find alternate routes. If the roadway was readily available and if the RM is willing to bear the cost of future movement due to road widening, SaskTel would be willing to enter an agreement to default to the roadway.
- SaskTel works with landowners during the design phase to identify concerns about future development and strives to support realistic plans with reroutes, deeper cable placement and other accommodations.
Joe Hargrave – Minister of Crown Investments