PacifiCorp expects to start work soon on Snyderville substation project in Utah

PacifiCorp utility Rocky Mountain Power (RMP) is waiting on one final clearance from Summit County for its Snyderville substation expansion project, but it intends to begin work soon and have the project in service in the fall, an RMP spokesperson told TransmissionHub April 20.

“We expect to start construction this spring,” the RMP spokesperson said when asked about the project.

RMP has received the conditional use permit from the Summit County Planning and Zoning Commission, which authorized construction of the project, but is waiting on one final clearance from the county, the utility spokesperson said.

The substation expansion, part of a multi-year effort to systematically upgrade the transmission system throughout Summit County in northern Utah, would add a new 138-kV transformer at the existing substation, RMP explained on a website for the project. To make space for the new transformer, the footprint of the Snyderville substation, located near Interstate 15 at Kimball Junction, will be increased by slightly less than one acre, according to the website.

The expansion is set to take place on the west side of the substation, with a portion dug down a few feet to reduce the visual impact of the expanded portion, RMP said on the website. A decorative wall will be built around the substation, the utility added.

Also included in the project is a new 80-foot steel transmission pole to replace the existing steel structure just outside of the substation to the west, RMP said.

RMP does not provide cost estimates of transmission projects, the utility spokesperson said.

The project is needed to improve reliability and address peak demand growth, with the peak demand period in the area occurring in the winter, the spokesperson noted.

The substation expansion will increase the capacity of the transmission system in the area and help minimize reliability risks, particularly during the peak periods from November to January each year, the utility said on the project website.

The area’s population is expected to increase at an average annual rate of 2.1%, the website said, citing figures from the Moutainland Association of Governments.

The substation expansion is consistent with the criteria laid out in 2010 by RMP and local officials in the Summit-Wasatch Electrical Plan, a comprehensive effort to improve the electrical system and meet the growing power needs in the area, RMP said.

The new transformer will receive electricity from an existing transmission line that goes through Parley’s Canyon, and it will reduce the voltage in order to connect with the 46-kV line that stretches to Park City, according to the project website. The addition will enhance the system serving customers in the Snyderville area that currently are served with only a 12-kV system, RMP said.

RMP is part of PacifiCorp, which is owned by Berkshire Hathaway Energy.