New PSE substation and upgraded electric system increase capacity and improve reliability in Bellingham area

BELLEVUE, Wash. (Feb. 5, 2009) – Customers in Bellingham’s Cordatta Parkway area are now powered by Puget Sound Energy’s new $4 million Laurel substation located at 5163 Guide Meridian Road. The new substation, which went online yesterday, will increase capacity and improve electric system reliability to PSE customers in the Bellingham area.

“Bringing online the Laurel substation on schedule is an important investment to help meet our customers’ increasing energy needs, primarily resulting from continued growth in the Bellingham area,” said Ray Trzynka, manager of local government and community relations for PSE.

The need for Laurel substation arose as Bakerview substation, the substation serving the area from approximately three miles away on James Street, was reaching maximum capacity. The new substation includes one 25 Megavolt Amperes (MVA) transformer, with room to add a second to later double the capacity of the substation within its current footprint. Existing transmission lines along Guide Meridian Road/State Route 539 bring power to the substation, where it is stepped down to voltages to serve the local area.

“Laurel substation is one of three newly constructed or upgraded electric system projects in Bellingham this year,” said Trzynka. “PSE is proud to uphold our commitment to Bellingham and surrounding communities to invest in local infrastructure and meet growing energy needs.

Just north of Bellingham in Ferndale, PSE’s LaBounty substation was upgraded this fall to increase electric capacity and improve reliability. The $1.6 million upgrade, completed in late October 2008, included new circuit breakers and a new transformer and communications equipment.

For more information about PSE improvement projects, please visit Current Projects on


Christina VerHeul, 1.888.831.7250

About Puget Sound Energy

Washington state’s oldest and largest energy utility, with a 6,000-square-mile service area stretching across 11 counties, Puget Sound Energy serves more than 1 million electric customers and nearly 750,000 natural gas customers. PSE, a subsidiary of Puget Energy (NYSE:PSD), meets the energy needs of its growing customer base primarily in Western Washington through incremental, cost-effective energy conservation, low-cost procurement of sustainable energy resources, and far-sighted investment in the energy-delivery infrastructure. PSE employees are dedicated to providing great customer service to deliver energy that is safe, reliable, reasonably priced, and environmentally responsible.