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NorthWestern Energy begins upgrade of south Montana Street substation in Butte

Apr 17, 2020

Butte, Mont. – April 16 2020 – Work is beginning on an upgrade of NorthWestern Energy’s substation on south Montana Street, located on the southeast corner of the intersection of Montana Street and George Street, north of Interstate 90.

The upgrade will enhance reliability for NorthWestern Energy’s 6,000 electric customers served by the substation.

Next week nine Douglas fir and spruce trees will be removed from the site. The trees, planted more than 60 years ago by the Montana Power Company, are nearing the end of their life span and some of the roughly 50-feet-tall trees are showing signs that they are dying.

“The landscape architect’s plans for replacement trees include a mix of evergreen and deciduous trees that will not grow as tall as those onsite now,” said NorthWestern Energy Project Manager Hannah Haffemann. “That is important for both the public’s safety and to ensure that the trees do not interfere with the transmission lines at the substation.”

In mid-May, there will be trench work to accommodate underground conduit. Equipment replacement at the substation will take place in mid-August. Landscaping will be done in the spring of 2021, when river birch, spring flowering crabapple, Japanese tree lilac, Rocky Mountain juniper, Black Hills spruce and Fat Albert spruce trees will be planted.

The trees being removed next week will be stored and distributed for firewood at a later date due to the current safety precautions in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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About NorthWestern Energy (NYSE: NWE)
NorthWestern provides electricity and / or natural gas to approximately 734,800 customers in Montana, South Dakota, and Nebraska. We have generated and distributed electricity in South Dakota and distributed natural gas in South Dakota and Nebraska since 1923 and have generated and distributed electricity and distributed natural gas in Montana since 2002. More information on NorthWestern is available on the company’s website at

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