Prescott said TransCanada secured the permit about three weeks ago after showing it would comply with regulations meant to protect the beetle's habitat.
He said a crew of about 375 people is working in Oklahoma now, but that figure is expected to double as construction activity ramps up in the coming weeks.
The project will include more than 20 different crews working on various aspects of the pipeline construction, from surveying to welding pipe sections to site reclamation and cleanup.
Prescott said pipe for the project is being housed in Holdenville and Cushing, but state crews are staging out of a construction yard in Prague.
“That'll be our base of operations in Oklahoma for the coming months,” he said.
TransCanada also is working in Cushing to build a pump station for the new pipeline and seven storage tanks that will hold up to 1.9 million barrels of oil.