AEP Ohio Transmission Company (AEP Ohio Transco) on Dec. 27 filed with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio a pre-application notification letter, saying that it has identified the need to amend its certificate of environmental compatibility and public need for the Yager-Desert Road 138-kV Transmission Line Rebuild Project, which was issued in May 2017.
The company said that the certificate needs to be amended to accommodate reroutes and adjustments to the approved route that have resulted after detailed engineering and property owner negotiations.
AEP Ohio Transco said that it anticipates that construction of the portions of the project that have not changed and will not be the subject of the amendment filing will begin in January, with an estimated in-service date of November 2020.
According to the Ohio Power Siting Board’s (OPSB) May 4, 2017 “opinion, order and certificates,” AEP Ohio Transco in July 2016 filed an application with the board for the Dennison-Yager 138-kV transmission line rebuild project, which involves the rebuilding of the existing 7.2-mile section of the Dennison-Yager section of the Dennison-Desert Road 69-kV electric transmission line.
The rebuild project is, in part, a response to the increased load growth caused by Utica shale activities. Moreover, the OPSB added, the line has been in service since 1926 and has deteriorated to the point where it no longer meets AEP Ohio Transco’s engineering standards. Among other benefits, rebuilding the line will reduce the risk of overloads, enhance reliability, address deterioration, bring the line to current standards, and facilitate the interconnection of new industrial customers, the OPSB said.
In July 2016, as supplemented in February 2017, AEP Ohio Transco filed an application with the OPSB for the Yager-Desert Road 138-kV transmission line rebuild project. For the project, the OPSB added, AEP Ohio Transco will rebuild a 6.8-mile Yager-Desert Road section of the Dennison-Desert Road 69-kV transmission line. The line has been in service since 1926 and no longer meets engineering standards, the OPSB said, adding that the rebuild project is, in part, driven by customer load growth from Utica shale activities.
The Yager-Desert Road project involves the installation of a new 138-kV, overhead electric transmission line between the Yager substation that is under construction and the existing Desert Road substation, the OPSB added in its order. The project’s preferred route is about 6.8 miles long and predominantly parallels the existing Dennison-Desert Road 69-kV transmission line. The new Yager-Desert Road line would be offset by about 25 feet from the centerline of the existing 69-kV line in order to ensure safe construction and reliability, as well as to allow the existing line to remain in service during construction, the OPSB added. The preferred route deviates from the existing 69-kV line centerline five times for a total of 1.4 miles, the OPSB said, noting that the deviations are intended to avoid residences and other sensitive land uses. The preferred route generally follows State Route 151 and parallels a railroad for the majority of its route.
Among other things, the OPSB said in its order that it approves stipulations filed regarding the Yager-Desert Road and the Dennison-Yager projects; conditions agreed to by the stipulating parties included that the facilities are to be installed on the company’s preferred routes.