PORTLAND, Maine — Construction on part of a $1 billion electricity transmission corridor through sparsely populated woods in western Maine is on hold because of legal action, but that doesn’t mean all building has been halted.

Workers installed the first of 829 steel poles Tuesday on a widened portion of the existing corridor that is part of the project near The Forks, as the groundwork is laid for the 145-mile (230-kilometer) New England Clean Energy Connect.

The work is getting started even though the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals delayed construction of a new 53-mile (85-kilometer) section.

Three conservation groups are seeking an injunction to delay the project while they sue to force the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers can conduct a more rigorous environmental review.