Colorado regulators: Public Service’s High Point Distribution Substation project requires a CPCN application

The Colorado Public Utilities Commission, in an order adopted on Sept. 19 and mailed on Sept. 21, said that certain proposed transmission projects require a certificate of public convenience and necessity (CPCN), while others do not.

As noted in the order, Rule 3206(d) of the commission’s Rules Regulating Electric Utilities, requires each Colorado electric utility to file with the commission, by April 30 of each year, information on proposed new construction or extensions of transmission facilities for the next three calendar years.

The commission said that new projects that were filed in 2018 under Rule 3206(d) are:

  • Black Hills Colorado Electric’s Desert Cove-Midway 115-kV Line Rebuild, which involves rebuilding the 14.8-mile line with new single-circuit, 115-kV construction. The line is located from Desert Cove to Midway north of Pueblo, Colo. The project was identified to mitigate thermal loading issues that arose through various transmission planning assessments. That facility will be designed by the utility to meet the Rule 3206 noise and magnetic field requirements. The utility requested the commission find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Black Hills Colorado Electric’s West Station-Greenhorn 115-kV Line Rebuild, which involves rebuilding the 12.1-mile line with new single-circuit, 115-kV construction. The line is located from West Station to Greenhorn in Pueblo. The line will be rebuilt to replace the existing conductor to increase the line’s capacity. That facility will be designed by the utility to meet the Rule 3206 noise and magnetic field requirements. The utility requested the commission find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Public Service Company of Colorado’s High Point Distribution Substation 230/13.8-kV project, which consists of installing a new 230/13.8-kV, 50 MVA distribution transformer in Aurora, Colo. The new substation is near the High Point and Aurora Highlands developments and is needed to provide additional capacity for load growth and redundancy around the area. Public Service indicated in an amended report that it expects to file a CPCN application
  • Public Service’s Dove Valley Distribution Substation project, which consists of adding a new distribution substation, including installation of a 115/13.8-kV, 50 MVA distribution transformer in Parker, Colo. The new substation is near the Compark and Ridgegate developments and is needed to provide additional capacity for load growth and redundancy around the area. Public Service will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field requirements. The utility requested the commission find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • * Public Service’s Stock Show Distribution Substation project, which consists of adding a new distribution substation, including installation of a 115/13.8-kV, 50 MVA distribution transformer in Denver, Colo. The new substation is near the development of the National Western Stock Show and is needed to provide additional capacity for load growth and redundancy around the area. Public Service will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field level requirements. The utility requested the commission find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association’s Arnold Delivery Point Substation project, which will sectionalize the Erie-Sipres-Henry Lake 230-kV line; the substation will serve redundant 230-24.9-kV transformers for a large industrial load. The substation is located 1.5 miles east of Erie, Colo. Tri-State will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field level requirements. Since the substation serves a single retail customer and is located on that customer’s land, the project does not require a CPCN. Tri-State requests the commission find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Tri-State’s Fuller Transformer T2 Addition project, which consists of the addition of a 230-115-kV, 150 MVA transformer. The substation is located in El Paso County, Colo. The transformer addition is required to accommodate load growth. Tri-State will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field level requirements. Tri-State requests the commission waive the CPCN requirement for transmission facilities designed at 230 kV or above and find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Tri-State’s JL Green 230-13.2-kV Transformer Addition project, which consists of the addition of a 230-13.2-kV, 36/48/60 MVA distribution transformer. The substation is located in El Paso County. The transformer addition is required to accommodate load growth. Tri-State will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field level requirements. Tri-State requests the commission waive the CPCN requirement for transmission facilities designed at 230 kV or above and find the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Tri-State’s Gateway 230/115/12.47-kV Delivery Point Substation project, which will sectionalize the existing Boyd-Longs Peak 230-kV line and add a new 230-115-kV, 90/120/150 MVA transformer. The substation is located near Loveland, Colo. The transformer addition is required to accommodate load growth
  • Tri-State’s Henry Lake Substation Expansion project, which consists of expanding the existing 115-kV portion of the Henry Lake 230-115-kV substation. A new 115-kV transformer and breakers will be installed, establishing a new delivery point. The substation is located in Lochbuie, Colo. Tri-State will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field level requirements. The utility requests that the commission issue a decision finding the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Tri-State’s Lloyd Sisson 115-kV Delivery Point project, which consists of 22-23 miles of 115-kV transmission from the existing Keota substation to a new 115/34.5-kV delivery point. The new delivery point is located about 10 miles northwest of Grover, Colo. The new substation will primarily serve load growth from existing oil- and gas-related loads, as well as transferred load from Wayne Child and Pine Bluffs substations. Tri-State will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field requirements. The utility requests that the commission issue a decision finding the project to be in the ordinary course of business
  • Tri-State’s Pierce Transmission Project, which will add two single-circuit, 115-kV lines from the Ault-Nunn Tap 115-kV line to the Pierce substation. The substation will be located in Pierce, Colo. The new substation will serve an end use customer. Tri-State will ensure that the project meets noise and magnetic field level requirements. The utility requests that the commission issue a decision finding the project to be in the ordinary course of business

The commission noted that its rules state that transmission facilities designed at 115 kV or 138 kV require a CPCN if the facilities do not meet the noise and magnetic field thresholds established in commission rules, or if the commission determines that the facilities are not in the ordinary course of business. Seven of the proposed projects are designed for operation at 115 kV and will be designed to be in compliance with the magnetic fields and audible noise rules, the commission said.

Noting that its rules generally require a CPCN for transmission facilities designed at 230 kV or above, the commission said that it will find that Public Service’s High Point Distribution Substation 230/13.8-kV project requires a CPCN application.

The commission also noted that one of its rules states that transmission facilities designed at 230 kV or above, even if initially operated at a lower voltage, require a CPCN application, unless the facility is a radial transmission line designed at 230 kV or above serving a single retail customer and terminating at that customer’s premises.

The Arnold Delivery Point Substation project is designed at 230 kV, serves a single retail customer, and terminates at the customer’s premises. The commission added that it will affirmatively determine that project to be in the ordinary course of business as requested by Tri-State.

Noting that its rules generally require a CPCN for transmission facilities designed at 230 kV or above, the commission said that it may waive applicable rules and not require CPCNs for specific projects, such as the addition of 230-kV transformers or other similar equipment inside of existing substations that would otherwise require a CPCN.

Tri-State requested that the commission rule that the Fuller Transformer T2 and JL Green Transformer projects do not require a CPCN and provided justification for that request, the commission said, adding that it will waive its rule for those projects and affirmatively find the Fuller Transformer T2 and the JL Green Transformer projects to be in the ordinary course of business, as well as not require a CPCN.

The commission also said that Black Hills Colorado Electric’s Desert Cove-Midway 115-kV Line Rebuild and West Station-Greenhorn 115-kV Line Rebuild projects are in the ordinary course of business and do not require a CPCN.

Public Service’s Dove Valley Distribution Substation and Stock Show Distribution Substation projects are also in the ordinary course of business and do not require a CPCN, the commission said.

Tri-State’s Henry Lake Substation Expansion project, Lloyd Sisson 115-kV Delivery Point project, and Pierce Transmission Project are in the ordinary course of business and do not require a CPCN, the commission said.

About Corina Rivera-Linares 3058 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.