Ameren Natural Gas Pipeline Extends Toward Ashland

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ASHLAND - Infrasource, the company contracted by Ameren Missouri to lay a natural gas pipeline from Columbia to Ashland, extended its work further south into Ashland Friday. 

Ameren Missouri said the pipeline is intended to ensure infrastructure for the growing city of Ashland.

Mike Holman is Ameren's director of the project and said the pipeline also means an increased opportunity for economic development. He also said developments, likely industrial, will go up in Ashland east of U.S. Highway 63 as a result of the pipeline. 

The pipeline, made of coded steel, now extends south of Angel Lane into a roughly 200-acre piece of property owned by local businesswoman Anna-Marie Knibbt. The property, "High Spirits Farm", is used to grow hay and raise horses for show.

Farm manager Kurt Rossouw said the pipeline is a step in the right direction for the farm and for the city of Ashland.

"It might bring some more clients, more interest into the horse business that we're doing," Rossouw said.

Knibbt owns two pieces of property in the area making up the farm. It houses around 80 horses. Russouw said as the pipeline is installed and infrastructure increases in the area it could mean expansion for the business. 

"If it's gonna bring a lot more houses and families and stuff it might spark interest in riding lessons," Rossouw said. 

The pipeline is also intended to bring natural gas closer to the Columbia Regional Airport, which sits just north of Knibbt's farm.

Ameren has been planning the project for two years. Rossouw said they tell him the pipeline will be through the property within a few weeks.