PPL Electric Utilities plans five projects in the Lake Wallenpaupack region in the next two years to improve reliability of service and better meet local demand for electricity. At a cost of about $6.8 million, the projects will benefit more than 21,000 local residents, businesses and other customers in Wayne and Pike counties.
In Hawley, the company will be building a new electric substation in 2011. It is expected to be built on a four-acre parcel just off Route 6, north of Route 590, near the lake. The new substation will provide an additional source of power supply to the area and feed two new distribution circuits.
Paul Canevari, regional community relations director, said PPL Electric Utilities is awaiting state Public Utility Commission approval, and plans to begin construction in March and complete work next fall. Preliminary engineering design is under way.
Another project under way will upgrade the company’s existing Newfoundland distribution line that serves about 3,000 local customers, primarily in Palmyra Township. Parts of the existing line run through Promised Land State Park and Promised Land State Forest, which means electric service can be affected by fallen trees, animals and other problems.
“Making our lines more accessible outside the park will help our ongoing maintenance and allow us to respond more quickly to outages when they occur,” Canevari said. The project involves re-constructing about seven miles of existing distribution lines that can meet increased demand and improve service.
Work crews also will add new ties and electronic switches with adjoining circuits, which will provide easier identification of any problems and allow system operators or linemen to reconfigure power flow to restore service faster. Construction of the Newfoundland project is expected to be completed in the fall 2011 as well.
Engineers for PPL Electric Utilities also identified the Honesdale and Lakeville areas in need of facility improvements for better reliability. The company will build a new distribution circuit, mainly along Route 590 and Ledgedale Road, to relieve electric load on other nearby lines and install a series of remotely operated control switches to reduce the duration of outages. Similarly, another new line will be extended mainly along Finn Swamp Road, equipped with ties and switches to benefit about 3,000 customers in the Lakeville area.
The fifth project involves construction of a new substation, known as Ledgedale, which will improve service for about 9,000 customers in Blooming Grove, Greene and Porter townships in Pike County. The new substation will be a hub to better supply local distribution lines. Substations lower the voltage of the electricity for local distribution.
Canevari said PPL Electric Utilities recognizes the level of reliability in the lake region has been below the company’s standard for service.
“We’ve been working to identify solutions and allocate funds to make improvements in the lake region,” he said. “We believe these projects will reduce the frequency and duration of outages when they occur. We appreciate the patience and support of the local community as we work to improve service in the area.”