Appalachian Power seeks to extend construction completion date of 138-kV project

American Electric Power’s (NYSE:AEP) Appalachian Power Company on May 17 filed a motion with the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) seeking to extend by 16 months, until Dec. 31, 2018, the date for completion of construction of the Tazewell-Bearwallow 138-kV Transmission Line Rebuild Project, which the SCC previously approved.

As TransmissionHub reported, the SCC, in a Sept. 14, 2015, final order, authorized the company to build and operate the rebuild project, subject to certain conditions.

The SCC noted in that order that the company, in its application, requested approval of the Virginia portion of the proposed project, which is to be located partly in Tazewell County, Va., and partly in McDowell County, W.Va. The company said that the project consists generally of an approximately 12.5-mile rebuild of an existing 69-kV transmission line to 138-kV, about 7.8 miles of which will be located in Virginia, and about 4.7 miles of which will be located in West Virginia; and associated substation improvements at the company’s existing Tazewell and Bearwallow substations in Virginia, and its existing Faraday substation in West Virginia, including buswork, switches and related equipment as well as an expansion of the upper yard at the Tazewell substation.

The company proposed an in-service date of summer 2017, and estimated that the project will cost about $38m, the SCC added.

According to the company, the rebuild is part of its comprehensive program to address significant reliability concerns associated with elements of its aging subtransmission system serving customers in Tazewell and McDowell counties. The rebuild, in combination with other components of the comprehensive program, would, for instance, address reliability concerns identified in the affected load area in Tazewell and McDowell counties, and improve the capacity of the transmission system in the affected load area to accommodate future load growth.

In its May 17 motion, the company noted that the SCC’s 2015 order required the project to be built and in service by Sept. 1, 2017, but granted the company leave to apply for an extension for good cause shown.

Due to outage constraints and serial construction sequencing requirements beginning on the Whitewood-Richlands 138-kV Line Project, and subsequently on the feeder lines from West Virginia, the company said that it will not be able to place the project in service by Sept. 1.

“The extension will allow the company sufficient time to complete the project and place it in service,” the company said.

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3231 Articles
Corina Rivera-Linares, chief editor for TransmissionHub, has covered the U.S. power industry for the past 15 years. Before joining TransmissionHub, Corina covered renewable energy and environmental issues, as well as transmission, generation, regulation, legislation and ISO/RTO matters at SNL Financial. She has also covered such topics as health, politics, and education for weekly newspapers and national magazines. She can be reached at clinares@endeavorb2b.com.