Electric and natural gas distribution
Subdivision control ordinances require that certain electric, natural gas, telephone and cable facilities be available in each new development. Typically, these facilities must be installed underground. To coordinate each facility placement, a utility easement is required for the companies serving your area.
Electric and Natural Gas Utility Easement Guidelines
- Lots with minimal vegetation along lot lines and relatively even terrain should have a utility easement of a 6-foot-wide strip along each side of each lot and a 12-foot-wide strip along the rear of each lot.
- Lots with heavy vegetation along the perimeter and/or great terrain differential should have a utility easement of a 6-foot-wide strip along each side of each lot and a 12-foot-wide along the front of each lot. Large lot sizes or heavy vegetation make facility installation along rear lot lines difficult. Under these conditions, buried electric and gas facilities may be installed along the front lot lines. For this reason, we suggest that the utility easement includes the front and sides of each lot. If rear lot orientation is requested, then a wider easement area is required depending upon facilities to be installed and the amount of vegetation.
- In some cases, a 15-foot-wide strip may also be required to accommodate large pad- mounted equipment for electric, telephone and cable needs.
- The required easement width allows room for multiple utilities (electric, telephone, cable) plus equipment.
Natural gas facilities tend to be installed in road right of way in those developments where electric, telephone, and cable are installed along rear lot lines. However, where we install electric, telephone, and cable in the front of the lot, we prefer to install all utilities including gas within our easement on private property to avoid multiple trenches for such installation.
Using point installation techniques, where gas facilities as well as electric, telephone, and cable are installed together, a 15-foot-wide or larger easement is required.
If the development includes mound systems for waste water treatment, their placement could restrict utility easement placement. The state of Wisconsin specifies that vehicular traffic, excavation and soil compaction are prohibited within the basal area of the mound system (the mound) and 15 feet down slope of the basal area. Our standards specify no vehicular traffic or trenching in the area of soil extending 25 feet beyond the down slope and side edges of the mound system.
What you do
- Include on the face of your plat the easement provisions that appear on the We Energies Utility Easement Provisions sticker, along with a key that identifies the utility easement areas on each lot. This accommodates the electric, gas, telephone, and cable installations.
- Include We Energies and names of local telephone and cable companies serving your area on the easement face. We may file our own easements in the area to avoid easement notification.
- Work with your engineering firm to include easement information appearing on the enclosed easement sticker on your plat template so that it appears an all of your developments. This enables you to simply add specific utility names to each newly platted subdivision or development to arrange for your utility easements.
- Communicate any revisions in the development’s plat or plans to a We Energies representative as soon as they occur. Revisions can have an impact on the easements being obtained for the development, which can affect both cost and timing for utility installation.
- If additional easements are required from adjacent property owners, the time to obtain easements for your development may be exhausted. If an easement is not allowed, a route change will be necessary, potentially delaying the project and causing additional costs.
- If a sticker easement or a specific easement is not granted prior to lot sales, an additional easement charge will apply for each lot sold.
- A utility easement is set aside for utility construction only; drainage or other facilities cannot be constructed on the utility easement. Likewise, utilities cannot install facilities on drainage, berm, landscape or other types of easements.
What we do
- Our Right of Way agent works with you to verify proper use of sticker easement and obtain all necessary easements to construct electric facilities within your development.
- Upon request, we can provide final easement location when it is needed for insertion into a final play for municipal subdivision approval.
- We record easements with county register of deeds if additional easements are required.