The $16.1 million project will increase the capacity and operational flexibility of NuStar’s pipeline system in the region, improving the flow of refined products from US Gulf Coast and Mid-Continent supply connections to customers in Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and the Dakotas, according to NuStar.

NuStar said that it has fast-tracked the construction project and it is expected to be completed in May 2009.

NuStar currently owns and operates two pipelines that stretch over 58 miles from El Dorado to McPherson, Kansas, including an eight-inch pipeline and a 10-inch pipeline. This line is a critical link in the 2,090-mile system that provides refined products to the states north of Kansas. The new pipeline will fill a 12.5-mile gap on the 10-inch line from El Dorado to Potwin, thereby eliminating bottlenecking and supply shortages that occurred on the eight-inch line during peak-demand periods.

The new pipeline project is in addition to nearly $15 million in improvements NuStar has made to the East Pipeline System in the last five years. These improvements include pipeline segment capacity increases, pipeline and terminal automation, terminal bottom loading conversions, storage increases, and information systems.