Dominion Virginia Power has applied to the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC) for permission to build two transmission lines — a 500 kV line and an associated 230 kV line — in southeastern Virginia to meet the increasing demand for electricity in Hampton Roads.
The SCC is responsible for approving the need for and route of all transmission lines of 150 kV and higher in Virginia. This project, which is estimated to cost $223.9 million, needs to be in service by the summer of 2011.
If approved, the 500kV line would extend about 60 miles from the company’s Carson Substation in Dinwiddie County to its Suffolk Substation near Suffolk, crossing Prince George, Sussex, Southampton and Isle of Wight counties. The lines are needed to meet the growing demand for electricity in south Hampton Roads and the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
The associated 230 kV power line would be about 21.5 miles long and be constructed within an existing right-of-way from the Suffolk Substation to the Thrasher Substation in Chesapeake.
New 500-230 kV transformers will be added at the Suffolk Substation. The Carson Substation and the Thrasher Substation will require expansions. Dominion plans to expand the Suffolk Substation in another project in 2009, so there will already be space for the addition of transformers included with this project.
"Dominion has an obligation to provide reliable and economical electric service to our customers, now and in the future," said John Smatlak, vice president-Electric Transmission. "These new lines are necessary to ensure continued reliable electric service to residences and businesses in a broad geographic area that is heavily dependent on the transmission system."
The SCC will set a schedule for public hearings. Dominion sponsored a series of public workshops in October 2006, during which residents in the study area provided information about various route segments that Dominion considered in its process.