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Pipeline project continuing on schedule

Mid-2014 completion is still expected for the Flanagan South oil pipeline, despite a recent delayed start on Oklahoma’s portion of the project, Enbridge Energy Co. officials said early this week.

Although some of the construction work planned for last August did not get underway until January, the $2.6 million project remains on schedule, according to Katy Lange, community-relations consultant for Enbridge, a Canadian-based pipeline operation with subsidiaries in the United States.

Flanagan South will traverse 589 miles from an Enbridge terminal in Pontiac, Ill., to storage facilities in Cushing, Okla.

The 36-inch interstate pipeline provides a link for transporting approximately 600,000 barrels per day of heavy crude oil from western Canada and North Dakota’s Bakken region to refineries along the U.S. Gulf Coast. The Flanagan South line will run adjacent to Enbridge’s existing 22- to 24-inch Spearhead pipeline, which will also be carrying diluted-bitumen and tar sands crude.

Speaking about “the timing of when the project will be up and running,” Lange said there may have been a miscommunication regarding the expected completion date — which previously was announced as “this fall.”

“It has been and still is mid-2014,” Lange said Monday.

The new pipeline crosses approximately 40 miles of Osage County beginning eight miles south of the Kansas border southwesterly en route to a pump station in Mannford.

Work began early this year on Enbridge’s new Pershing pump station facility south of Pawhuska near the junction of state highways 11 and 99. The facility is one of seven new pump stations being built for the project, which will include a total of 13 along four-state route.

Clearing of right-of-way started in late January along area portions of the line, with initial installation of pipe to begin near Wynona.

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