PECO has invested more than $60 million in the newly-constructed Peltz substation to improve electric service reliability and meet the growing energy needs of customers in portions of Center City and University City in Philadelphia. Construction of the new substation began in December 2009. Its completion also allows for the retirement of the Schuylkill substation, which has been in operation since 1906.
The Peltz substation takes higher voltage electricity, 230-kV from PECO’s electric transmission system and converts it to lower voltage electricity, 13 kV, for distribution to the nearby area. The substation provides power to 32 circuits through three new transformers to help accommodate increasing customer electric needs. In addition to the new transformers and existing circuits, work on the substation included the installation of 100,000 ft of underground cable, 60 manholes and 25 pieces of new underground equipment designed to minimize the number of customers affected if an outage occurs.
“Each year, PECO invests hundreds of millions of dollars in construction projects such as the Peltz substation, infrastructure improvements and preventative maintenance work across the region,” said John McDonald, vice president of Technical Services. “The strategic construction, upgrading and expansion of our facilities and equipment are crucial to providing customers with the safe and reliable service they expect.”
Peltz substation is the fifth new electric substation built in recent years to modernize the electric infrastructure and meet increasing customer demand in certain areas of Philadelphia. PECO completed the construction of Tunnel substation adjacent to University of Pennsylvania and Children’s Hospital in 2009. The company built the Tuna substation along North Delaware Avenue in 2005, completed the Waverly substation in Center City in the 2007, and completed the Southwark substation, feeding the former Navy Yard, in April of 2008. These projects alone represent a $180 million investment in Philadelphia’s electric distribution system.
In addition to electric service enhancement projects such as the Peltz substation, PECO will complete more than 60 projects through the spring designed to ensure reliable service and accommodate the increased customer demand placed on the electric system during the summer months.
As part of the project, PECO contributed $250,000 to the Philadelphia Percent for Art Program, which was established in 1959 by the City of Philadelphia. The program provides local companies and organizations the opportunity to give back through local community art installations. PECO’s support of the program includes funding for the development of a community art curriculum at the University Of The Arts, whose students will develop a public art project benefiting Grays Ferry, Point Breeze, and neighborhoods south of South Street in Philadelphia.