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Puget Sound Energy electric transmission line project
Moorlands - Vitulli 115 kV transmission line upgrade
Spring 2014 project updates
- We're currently working on final engineering and project design; surveying along the project route will continue throughout 2014.
- We anticipate beginning the permit approvals process later this year and anticipate construction will begin as early as spring 2015 with completion by fall 2015.
One of the existing electric transmission lines bringing power to customers in Kenmore and Bothell is approaching its capacity limits, and is at risk of overloading during periods of high energy usage – putting our customers at risk for power outages. The Moorlands-Vitulli power line, which was originally constructed in the 1940s, needs higher-capacity wire to meet the needs of a 21st Century community. Additionally, many of the poles and associated equipment are aging and in need of replacement.
PSE plans to rebuild the existing 5-mile Moorlands-Vitulli line between Moorlands substation (8010 NE 185th St. in Kenmore) and Vitulli substation (18458 120th Ave. NE in Bothell) (see project map) with higher-capacity wire and new wood poles. By doing so, customers in the area will see improved electric service reliability, and we can meet the energy needs of the community well into the future.
The wood poles that hold the existing transmission line also hold a distribution line, and this configuration will remain after the project is complete. A segment of the existing distribution line is prone to tree-related power outages. As part of the project, we will also be installing approximately a half mile of tree wire along the distribution line along NE 195th Street from the North Bothell substation (NE 195th St. and 100th Ave. NE in Bothell) to just east of 92nd Avenue NE. Tree wire is a specially coated overhead wire, which prevents an electric short in the line (and subsequent outage) in the event a tree limb falls into the line. Tree wire is very useful at preventing “branch-related” outages in heavily treed areas. However, it does not prevent outages caused by an en¬tire tree falling into the line, which is heavy enough to cause poles and wires to break.
What is a transmission line?
Transmission lines are key elements in the electrical distribution system. The lines safely transport high voltage electricity from power generation sources like dams and wind generating facilities to substations in local communities. Transmission normally takes place at voltages of 55 kV and higher.
What is a substation?
Substations are critical links in the electricity distribution system, containing utility circuit protection, voltage regulation, and equipment that steps down higher voltage to lower voltage. Before reaching homes and businesses, power is routed through our transmission system to a substation where it is changed to a lower voltage that can be utilized by customers.
Committed to keeping you informed
PSE will continue to provide updates to the community. We will notify residents and businesses near the project area when construction will occur. We aim to complete the work with as little disruption as possible.
Download these PDF files for more detail on PSE's Moorlands - Vitulli 115 kV transmission line upgrade project.
Project update notice, April 2014
Project notice, August 2012