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Puget Sound Energy transmission line project
Winter 2015 project updates
Growth is straining the region’s electric transmission system. Growth studies project that demand for reliable power will exceed capacity as early as winter 2017/2018. This doesn't mean the lights will go out, but without substantial electrical infrastructure upgrades and aggressive conservation efforts, the Eastside's power system will lose redundancy, increasing the possibility of outages for as many as 60,000 customers.
To ensure the Eastside's power system can continue to support the area's dramatic growth, PSE will build a new electric substation and higher capacity transmission lines to serve homes and businesses on the Eastside. The new substation will provide additional capacity to ensure the local electric system can accommodate our customers’ growing energy usage, while the transmission lines will ensure we can deliver that additional capacity to Eastside communities. This effort will upgrade our existing transmission system and provide more dependable power for Eastside communities for many years to come.
The transmission lines will connect an existing substation in Redmond to one in Renton. We won't know the exact route until we've completed a robust public engagement process, which is currently underway.
We are asking the public to provide feedback on which route options best reflect the values of the Eastside community. PSE has convened a Community Advisory Group representing various Eastside interests to help PSE narrow which route options should be included for further evaluation. After collecting feedback from the public, the advisory group and other stakeholders, PSE expects to select a preferred route and substation site in early 2015. Construction is planned to begin in 2017 with project completion expected in 2018.
What is a transmission line?
Transmission lines are key elements in the electrical distribution system. These 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.