Jurupa Valley, Calif., continues opposition to power line

Almost exactly a year after going on record in opposition to a plan to run high-voltage power lines within the boundaries of its city, the Jurupa Valley, City Council in California is still trying to halt the project.

On Nov. 1, the council discussed whether to file suit to halt the Riverside Transmission Reliability Project (RTRP) or to initiate administrative proceedings before the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), but emerged from a closed-door executive session without having decided upon an action, a council clerk confirmed to TransmissionHub Nov. 2.

The council unanimously approved its first resolution opposing the project on Nov. 17, 2011.

The project is planned by the city of Riverside, Calif., Public Utilities Department and Southern California Edison (SCE) as a way to provide Riverside “with adequate capacity to serve existing load, to provide for long-term capacity for system load growth, and to provide needed system reliability,” according to the draft environmental impact report (DEIR).

Calls seeking additional comments from city officials, SCE, and the city of Riverside were not returned by press time Nov. 5.

The major components of the project are a new 230-kV double-circuit, overhead transmission line that would connect to the Mira Loma-Vista 230-kV line, new 69-kV overhead transmission lines, two new substations, and upgrades at four existing substations, according to the DEIR.

According to the preferred route for the $150m to $175m project identified in the DEIR, the 230-kV line would extend south from the point it connects to the Mira Loma-Vista line, running parallel to and east of Interstate 15, just inside the city’s western boundary. It would then turn east along the city’s border with the city of Norco, Calif., before entering Riverside near the Pedley substation. According to TransmissionHub data, the total length of the project would be approximately 10 miles.

The project dates to June 2006, when the California ISO’s board of directors directed SCE to build the line “as soon as possible and preferably no later than June 30, 2009,” according to the DEIR.

Riverside’s planning commission voted in April to recommend that the city council certify the EIR and move ahead with the project. The Jurupa Valley city council’s Nov. 1 closed door meeting came in response to a comment by Riverside’s mayor that the EIR was in final form and would go before the Riverside City Council on Nov. 27.

In its 2011 resolution, the city listed as one of its major complaints that the city of Riverside failed to acknowledge the new city of Jurupa Valley and its importance in the approval process for the project. Jurupa Valley, which abuts Riverside to the north, was incorporated as a city on July 1, 2011.

The city’s 2011 resolution also said Riverside and SCE failed to consider alternative routes or undergrounding the high-voltage lines to minimize the disruption they would cause. Those concerns have not been addressed, according to Jurupa Valley city officials.

SCE is a subsidiary of Edison International (NYSE:EIX).