FirstEnergy provides updates on Mon Power, Ohio Edison projects

FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE) on May 25 said that its subsidiary, Mon Power, is completing a $2.2m enhancement project that reroutes transmission lines away from a substation that is scheduled to be dismantled adjacent to the decommissioned Willow Island generating station in Pleasants County, W.Va.

The work involved rebuilding four transmission lines to connect with an existing substation near Belmont, the company said, noting that the lines were previously routed through a substation near the Willow Island power plant, which was closed in 2012.

A company spokesperson on May 25 told TransmissionHub that all four lines are 138-kV lines.

The project included building 15 new wooden structures, a new steel structure, along with installing additional breakers and other electrical equipment at the substation near Belmont, the company said.

Holly Kauffman, president of FirstEnergy’s West Virginia operations, said in the statement, in part, that the new configuration means that the company will not have to spend additional money and manpower inspecting and maintaining the older equipment located at the Willow Island site.

For the final part of the project – which should be completed in June – a contractor will dismantle the de-energized transmission substation next to the old power plant, removing steel, breakers, and other electrical equipment from the site for recycling, FirstEnergy said.

The company noted that the line relocation project is part of its previously announced plans to invest about $166m this year in distribution and transmission infrastructure projects to enhance service reliability in Mon Power’s service area.

Ohio Edison substation

Separately, FirstEnergy said that its subsidiary, Ohio Edison, will energize a new $2.4m distribution substation near West Jefferson, Ohio, later this month to enhance customer service reliability, as well as to help meet future demand for electricity in the Madison and Franklin county areas west of Columbus.

The project included using precast concrete foundations, a large transformer, switching gear, and circuit breakers, the company said in its May 17 statement, noting that the substation was built in less than 10 months.

The substation is connected to the existing Ohio Edison system in the region using two underground circuits that were built as part of the project, FirstEnergy said. Specialized communications equipment was also installed at the substation to remotely monitor operations, the company said, adding that if needed, circuit breakers or other relay devices can be reset automatically to help reduce the duration of an outage.

Randall Frame, regional president of Ohio Edison, said in the statement, in part: "This project is the sixth modular substation we have completed in the Ohio Edison area over the past several years.  In addition to reducing the construction schedule, the standardized design also helps reduce maintenance costs."  

FirstEnergy said that the substation project is part of its previously announced plan to invest more than $371m this year in distribution and transmission infrastructure projects to enhance service reliability in Ohio Edison’s service area. More than $227m of the total is expected to be spent on transmission-related projects owned by FirstEnergy’s American Transmission Systems, Incorporated, the company said.

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3054 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.