Paulding Wind Farm IV LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of EDP Renewables North America LLC, on Oct. 17 filed with the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) an application for a certificate of environmental compatibility and public need to build a 2.9-mile, 138-kV transmission line and associated laydown yard – referred to as the facility – in Paulding County, Ohio.
The company said that the Timber Road IV Transmission Line is associated with the Timber Road IV Wind Farm in Paulding County. The primary purpose of the facility is to deliver up to 75.9 MW of renewable electricity to the regional electric grid to serve the needs of electric utilities and their customers, the company said.
The facility’s transmission route would begin at the wind farm’s collection substation and terminate at the existing Timber Road III Transmission Line, which would carry up to 75.9 MW of electricity to the point of interconnect (POI). The POI is the existing Logtown 138-kV substation, enabling the energy to be transferred to the transmission grid operated by PJM Interconnection, the company added.
The preferred transmission route would travel west along Township Road (TR) 52 from the wind farm’s collection substation, which is located at the intersection of TR 52 and TR 59, ending at the existing Timber Road III Transmission Line. The company also said that the preferred transmission route crosses about 2.9 miles of land in Benton Township.
While there may be various structure types used for the facility, due to different constraints at various locations, all structures along the transmission line are expected to utilize a single-pole design, which minimizes the amount of soil disturbance when compared to double-pole, H-frame designs. About 19 structures are proposed along the 2.9-mile preferred route, which equates to an average spacing of about 880 feet between structures, the company added.
The company said that it has secured all transmission line easement for the preferred route, adding that the poles are located based on landowner preferences.
Based on geographic information system (GIS) data managed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), the majority of the preferred route – and the alternate route – as well as the laydown yard, is on cropland and farmsteads. The company also said that neither the preferred route nor the alternate route cross ODNR-mapped wetlands. However, both routes traverse wetlands identified by the National Wetlands Inventory (NWI). The company added that while the laydown yard does not cross any ODNR-mapped wetlands, it is within 20 feet of an NWI-mapped wetland.
In addition to ecological resources, utility resources were identified in the vicinity of the facility. The company added that in addition to existing Timber Road II and Timber Road III utility infrastructure – buried collection lines, overhead transmission line – one natural gas transmission pipeline exists within the vicinity of the transmission line.
One segment of the gas pipeline, owned and managed by Panhandle Eastern Pipeline Co., crosses paths with the alternate route, while another runs parallel to the preferred route. The company added that an existing transmission line – owned by AEP Transmission Company, runs along SR 114, immediately south of the laydown yard. All resources present along those transmission routes will be evaluated and avoided to the greatest extent practicable, the company said.
Once reaching the grid, the energy would be available for sale at wholesale or under a power purchase agreement (PPA).
The facility’s temporary laydown yard would be located northeast of the TR 59 and State Route (SR) 114 intersection, the company added that the purpose of the laydown yard would be to provide office space for the construction teams and to provide storage space for the transmission line components.
If approved, it is anticipated that a certificate would be issued in 1Q19, and construction would be completed around October 2019. The company also said that the facility would be placed in service upon completion of construction, anticipated for 4Q19.
The estimates of applicable intangible and capital costs for the proposed facility were redacted in the filing. The Logtown POI switchyard and the wind farm’s collection substation are not included in estimated costs because it is either existing infrastructure, or not applicable to the application, the company said.