American Electric Power’s (NYSE:AEP) Appalachian Power and its affiliate AEP West Virginia Transmission Co., are working on three transmission projects in four West Virginia counties that will involve rebuilding more than 50 miles of transmission line and making upgrades to several substations throughout the counties, according to a Jan. 12 statement.
The Meadow Bridge Transmission Line Upgrade in Fayette and Greenbrier counties, the Carbondale Transmission Line Upgrade in Kanawha and Fayette counties, and the Pineville Area Power Improvements project in Wyoming County are designed to improve electric power reliability to customers by replacing aging infrastructure with modern technology, the companies said.
The improvements will also reduce the likelihood of extended outages to customers and decrease restoration times when outages do occur, the companies said.
According to the fact sheet on the Meadow Bridge project, that project consists of rebuilding about 20 miles of the Layland-McClung 69-kV transmission line in the Layland, Meadow Bridge, and Quinwood areas of West Virginia. The work will replace wooden structures with steel structures to reduce the likelihood of power outages and build a transmission system capable of handling increased power demand in the area, the fact sheet noted.
Most of the line will require supplementing existing easements, and about two miles will require a new right of way (ROW), according to the fact sheet.
The existing line starts at the Layland substation near Stanaford Road in Fayette County, and runs east for five miles to the Meadow Bridge substation, just west of Alaska Mountain Road. From there, the fact sheet added, the line continues northeast for 15 miles, crossing into Greenbrier County through Rainelle and ending just outside of the McClung substation.
Proposed structures will vary depending on location, and the average height of the structures along the route is 75 feet, the fact sheet said, adding that the company is using galvanized steel H-frame structures to replace the wood structures.
The typical ROW width is 100 feet, the fact sheet noted.
According to the project schedule, transmission line construction is set to begin in January 2020, with the project planned to be in service in December 2020.
According to the Carbondale project website, that project consists of rebuilding about 16 miles of transmission line and making associated upgrades to additional transmission facilities in the project area.
Construction is expected to begin this fall, and take about 12 months to complete, the site noted.
According to the Pineville project website, that project consists of upgrading about 17 miles of transmission line to 69-kV standards and making upgrades to existing substations in the project area.
Construction is expected to begin at the end of this year, and be complete by the end of 2019.
According to the Jan. 12 statement, Appalachian Power will host four open houses to provide the community and affected landowners with project details and an opportunity to view preliminary study segments:
- An open house on the Meadow Bridge project will take place on Jan. 25
- Open houses on the Carbondale project will take place on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1
- An open house on the Pineville project will take place on Feb. 6
The statement noted that following the open houses, project team members will use information gathered to determine a final proposed route.