North Edinburg-Loma Alta Transmission Project
On January 17, 2012, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) Board of Directors endorsed and deemed “critical to reliability” a new 345-kilovolt (kV) transmission project from North Edinburg to south McAllen and then near the Port of Brownsville. The project will be jointly constructed by ETT and Sharyland Utilities. ETT is a joint venture between the subsidiaries of American Electric Power (NYSE: AEP) and MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company.
The total transmission line project length is between 80 and 125 miles long. It begins at the AEP Texas Central Company’s (TCC) North Edinburg Substation in Hidalgo County and then continues to a location near the existing AEP TCC South McAllen Substation. From this point, the line would continue to its end point at the Brownsville Public Utilities Board (BPUB) Loma Alta Substation in Cameron County, located at the Brownsville Ship Channel.
The project is part of a larger effort known as the Cross Valley Project, which is needed in order to ensure reliable electric service for the Lower Rio Grande Valley, while also addressing continued growth in electrical load in the Brownsville area. The need for this project is the result of limited generation import capability and forecasted continued electrical demand growth in the region.
ETT will be constructing the western portion of the line and Sharyland Utilities will be responsible for the east portion. The companies anticipate filing a joint CCN application in 2013 with completion of the project envisioned for 2016. Potential routes have been developed and environmental studies have been conducted prior to the open houses which are scheduled the weeks of October 8 and October 15.
ETT acquires, constructs, owns and operates transmission facilities within the ERCOT, primarily in and around the AEP Texas Central Company and AEP Texas North Company service territories.
AEP, headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest electric utilities in the U.S., delivering electricity to more than 5 million consumers in 11 states. AEP has extensive experience building extra-high-voltage 765-kV transmission lines and owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, an over 40,000-mile network that includes 2,100 miles of 765-kV transmission lines, more than all other U.S. transmission systems combined.
MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company, based in Des Moines, Iowa, is a global provider of energy services to more than 6.9 million customers worldwide. MidAmerican Energy Holdings Company subsidiaries, PacifiCorp and MidAmerican Energy Company, own and operate more than 18,000 miles of electric transmission lines.
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