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Puget Sound Energy transmission line project
Spring 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.
Public route discussion process
In order to provide a forum that would generate robust input from diverse community stakeholders, PSE convened a Community Advisory Group
comprised of 24 representatives from various interests across the Eastside. The Community Advisory Group’s goals were to help identify and assess community values in the context of evaluating which route the new transmission lines should follow, and to develop a route recommendation for PSE’s consideration.
The advisory group spent a year learning about the Eastside’s electrical system, participating in meetings and workshops
, and evaluating the 18 route options identified by PSE. The advisory group completed their work on Dec. 10, 2014 and selected routes Oak and Willow as their final recommendation for PSE’s consideration.
The Community Advisory Group process was supplemented by broad and ongoing community outreach, including six public open houses, two question and answer sessions, six community workshops, hundreds of briefings and thousands of emails and comments about the project. At outreach events, the community learned about outcomes of the advisory group process to date and submitted feedback that the advisory group considered in their discussions and route evaluations.
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.