Open House Planned For Buchanan-To-Bridgman I&M Project


Indiana Michigan Power is planning an open house for next month to tell Berrien County residents about a new transmission line project between Bridgman and Buchanan. Spokesperson Corey Ohlenkamp tells us the company is investing $62 million in improving the reliability of the system. Although the work won’t start until 2026, I&M wants people to know now.

“We wanted to get this going as early as possible because there’s a lot of right of way communication that needs to start, and we want to make sure that our community members in the area know what’s going on ahead of time,” Ohlenkamp said. “We don’t like these kids of projects to spring up on folks.”

Ohlenkamp says I&M will replace 70-year-old wooden poles and other equipment between Buchanan and Bridgman.

“Right now, that area needs quite a bit of frequent maintenance and things to keep the systems online. Hopefully, this infrastructure improvement will help with that. The other big part of this project is that we’re building another entirely new substation.”

That substation will be in Buchanan. Ohlenkamp says I&M staff will be able to discuss the 17-mile project at an open house December 6 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Lehman’s Orchard on Red Bud Trail in Buchanan. Anyone can stop by. The project starts in early 2026 and should be finished in the summer of 2027.