As part of its ongoing efforts to strengthen the durability and flexibility of its electric system, FirstEnergy Corp. expects to invest about $120 million in 2015 on distribution and transmission infrastructure projects in Toledo Edison's eight-county service area in northwest Ohio.
Major projects scheduled for 2015 include the completion of a new transmission substation in the Perrysburg area, continuing work on a new 345-kV transmission line, replacing transformers and breakers, and inspecting and replacing utility poles and other equipment.
More than $76 million of the budgeted total will be spent on transmission-related projects owned by American Transmission Systems, Incorporated, a FirstEnergy transmission company.
"We continually review and re-evaluate our system, looking for projects that can provide the greatest benefit to the greatest number of our customers," said Rich Sweeney, president of Toledo Edison. "This ongoing work, in addition to equipment inspections, improves our system, helping to reduce the number and length of service disruptions our customers might experience."
Scheduled FirstEnergy projects planned in the Toledo Edison service area in 2015 include:
· Completing a new 48-mile transmission line that runs through parts of Fulton, Henry, Lucas and Wood counties at an estimated cost of almost $18 million to help enhance service reliability in the region by strengthening the grid and increasing flexibility in the routing of power.
· Spending an expected $10 million to complete a new transmission substation south of Perrysburg to help enhance service reliability in the region.
· Replacing a large transformer at a substation near Sylvania at an estimated cost of nearly $3 million.
· Upgrading equipment on distribution circuits throughout the region at an estimated cost of $4 million to help reduce the number of outages and improve reliability. The improvements include adding and replacing step transformer banks, lightning protection, insulators, cross arms and braces, grounds and animal guards.
· Investing more than $2.2 million inspecting and replacing distribution poles in the Toledo Edison service area. This inspection process is conducted on a 10-year cycle. More than 21,000 utility poles are scheduled to be inspected in 2015 and replaced or repaired, as needed.
· Replacing 345-kV circuit breakers at a substation at the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station at an expected cost of about $1.5 million.
Toledo Edison serves more than 300,000 customers in all or parts of Defiance, Fulton, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Sandusky, Williams and Wood counties in northwest Ohio.
FirstEnergy’s 10 electric distribution companies form one of the nation's largest investor-owned electric systems, serving customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia, Maryland and New York.