Virginia SCC asked to approve Appalachian Power request for Abingdon grid project

Appalachian Power today filed an application with the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) requesting permission to upgrade its transmission system in Washington County.

The proposed South Abingdon Extension Project involves construction of about 4 miles of 138-kilovolt transmission line, a new substation, and upgrading three existing substations. The proposed project will address the area’s increasing electricity demand while improving local power reliability for residential and business customers.

“Providing reliable service to customers at an affordable price is a priority of this company,” said Mary Begley, external affairs manager for Appalachian Power. “Filing this application allows us to move forward with upgrading our local electric grid to accommodate economic growth in the area.”

The company’s preferred route starts at an existing transmission line on the west side of Abingdon and continues south across Interstate 81 into Washington County before turning east to an end point at the new substation on Vances Mill Road.    

If approved by the SCC, construction is expected to start by the end of this year and be completed by the end of 2017. Estimated budget for this project is $30 million.

The South Abingdon Extension is the first of two phases of Appalachian Power’s previously announced Abingdon and Washington County Area Improvements Project.  The company plans to file the second phase of the project by the end of 2016.

Since the announcement of this project in September 2015, the company held an informational open house, met with community leadership and worked closely with landowners. Additional information about the project including maps, photos, and the company’s SCC filing is available at