Lordstown Ultium Web 1

Construction Underway on New FirstEnergy High-Voltage Line in Lordstown, Ohio

Nov. 4, 2021
Work builds upon power system upgrades completed in first phase of construction.

The second phase of construction on new electric transmission infrastructure in Trumbull County, Ohio, is underway by FirstEnergy Corp. to support the energy demands of the area's rapidly expanding electric vehicle (EV) industry. The work is also expected to help reduce the frequency and duration of power outages experienced by Ohio Edison customers in the area.

As part of the US$12 million project, FirstEnergy utility workers are building a new, high-voltage power line in Lordstown to accommodate the projected future energy needs of Ultium Cells LLC — an EV battery-cell manufacturing plant jointly backed by General Motors and South Korea's LG Energy Solution.

The new 138-kV line extends approximately 3.5 miles to connect electric substations in the area and will strengthen the regional transmission system to benefit more than 15,000 Ohio Edison customers in Lordstown and nearby communities. When completed, the new line will offer a backup power feed that will help keep the lights on for customers if wires or equipment on their regular line are damaged or need to be taken out of service.

"FirstEnergy and Ohio Edison continue to play a key role in the region's development by working to ensure the local power grid is ready to support the demands of Ultium Cells LLC and other energy-intensive customers in the region," said Ed Shuttleworth, president of FirstEnergy's Ohio operations. "We're proud to support work to help advance business development in the region while strengthening our system to meet the growing demand for safe and reliable power for many years to come."

To help minimize the project's impact on local communities and the environment, two miles of the new power line will utilize existing steel towers along a FirstEnergy transmission corridor. The remaining work will require new construction of steel and wood structures. The project is expected to be completed in early 2022.

The work underway builds upon the company's completion of a nearly US$20 million project, which included the construction of a new transmission substation and a short, high-voltage power line to provide electric service to Ultium Cells LLC. The company's nearly 3 million-square-foot facility is expected to bring approximately 1100 jobs to the area.

Additional work completed in the area includes the installation of new automated technology and equipment to enhance service reliability for hundreds of residents and businesses.

In recognition of its efforts, FirstEnergy was named by Site Selection magazine in 2021 as a "Top 20" utility for expertise in promoting economic development. Over the past five years, FirstEnergy has helped attract more than 30,000 new jobs and US$17.5 billion in third-party capital investment in its six-state service area. In Ohio alone, FirstEnergy helped attract nearly 7700 jobs and US$2.6 billion in third-party capital investment in 2020.

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