Dominion Virginia Power proposes new substation, transmission line

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Dominion Virginia Power proposed to build in Loudoun County, Va., the new 230-34.5-kV Poland Road substation and a new, nearly four-mile, overhead 230-kV double circuit transmission line between a tap of existing 230-kV Loudoun–Brambleton Line #2094 (Poland Road Junction) and the proposed Poland Road substation — Poland Road Loop.

The proposed new facilities must be in service by June 2018 to serve a retail electric service customer’s development located on about 47 acres in Loudoun County. That in-service date reflects a coordinated adjustment to the customer’s original load ramp and campus build-out schedule to accommodate the permitting and construction schedule, the company added in its May 20 application filed with the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) seeking a certificate of public convenience and necessity.

The customer is developing a data center campus in Loudoun County, which has been identified as the East Gate Campus. That development, Dominion Virginia Power added, is located south of Washington Dulles International Airport, about 3.3 miles west of Route 28 along Route 50, and the customer has requested retail electric service from Dominion Virginia Power.

The total customer load at East Gate Campus is projected to be about 152 MW, consisting of four buildings.

Further discussing the need for the proposed project, the company said that neither of its stations containing distribution-level voltage that currently feed into the area where the customer is building the East Gate Campus — Brambleton station and Walney substation — is suitable to be a long-term source of power to serve the customer’s projected loads.

The project’s estimated cost is about $54.5 million, of which about $39.5 million is for transmission line construction, about $4.3 million is for transmission station work, and $10.7 million is for distribution substation work.

“The proposed facilities will afford the best means of meeting the continuing need for reliable service while reasonably minimizing adverse impact on the scenic, environmental and historic assets of the area,” the company said.

The project will be built on a new 100-foot transmission right of way (ROW), but parallels Route 50 for substantially all of its length. The project will use double circuit, single-shaft galvanized steel poles with three twin-bundled 795 ACSR 26/7 phase conductors with a summer transfer capability of 1225 MVA. The company also said that it has identified a proposed route and two alternate routes for the SCC’s consideration.

Of the proposed route for the new 230-kV double circuit transmission line, the company said that it begins at a tap-point along the 230-kV Loudoun-Brambleton Line #2094, about 800 feet south of Route 50, and extends for about four miles primarily paralleling Route 50 before ending at the proposed Poland Road substation.

The proposed route angles to the north from the tap-point for 1,200 feet to parallel Route 50 on the south side of the roadway. The proposed route continues parallel to the south side of Route 50 for about 1.9 miles, crossing to the north side of Route 50, east of the intersection with Loudoun County Parkway/Old Ox Road.

The proposed route, the company continued, continues east parallel to the south side of South Perimeter Road, crossing Vance Road before turning southeast parallel to the east side of Vance Road for about 920 feet. At that point, the proposed route turns east parallel to the north side of Route 50 for about one mile. At that point, the company added, the proposed route angles to the northeast, away from Route 50, to avoid development immediately adjacent to the roadway.

On the east side of the development, the proposed route angles sharply to the south, crossing Route 50 and entering the proposed Poland Road substation property.

Dominion Virginia Power said that its experience, the advice of consultants and a review of published studies by experts in the field have disclosed no causal link to harmful health or safety effects from electric and magnetic fields generated by the company’s existing or proposed facilities.

It also noted that initially, the Poland Road substation will primarily feed the customer’s load, but will be available for future load growth in the surrounding area. Ultimately, the reliability for customers in the Poland Road load area can be enhanced for two reasons. For instance, with additional capacity, the company will have greater opportunity to switch load to other available circuits in the event of an outage on any given circuit, which can result in faster restoration times in the event of an outage.

SCC staff, in a May 28 letter to the state Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), requested that the DEQ coordinate a review of the company’s application by the appropriate agencies and provide SCC staff with an impact review.

In a separate May 28 letter to the state Office of Wetlands & Stream Protection, SCC staff said that it awaits the office’s determination of completeness of the information received, or the office’s listing of information that the DEQ needs to begin the wetlands impacts consultation.

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