Corporate

Northwest–Elmont–Lakeside 230kV Line

Traffic Alert

UTILITY WORK ON I-295 TO SLOW TRAFFIC TEMPORARILY THIS WEEK
All lanes will be impacted while crews pull power lines

I-295 North/South (Henrico) – Starting Monday, April 14, 2014, all lanes will be gradually brought to a decreased speed limit, intermittently on I-295 in both directions between Woodman Road (Exit 45) and Staples Mill Road (Exit 49), to allow utility crews from Dominion Virginia Power to pull lines over I-295.

Drivers can expect delays intermittently in each direction during the following times:

  • Monday, April 14, 2014 – Friday, April 18, 2014 from 8:30am – 4:00pm.

Drivers should expect delays and consider using an alternate route during these periods and reduce speed within the work zone for crew safety. For the current road conditions and real-time traffic, call 511 or visit www.511Virginia.org

In our continued commitment to provide safe and reliable power to area customers, Dominion plans to add a 230 kilovolt (kV) transmission line between the Northwest and Lakeside Substations in Henrico County. The 11.5 mile line will extend through Mountain Road Substation and Elmont Substation in Hanover County (see map).

Over the last two decades, this immediate area has experienced a 64% increase in demand for power. By 2013, forecasted demand could jeopardize the mandatory reliability standards that Dominion is required to meet as set by the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC).

To minimize any community impact, construction of the line will largely utilize existing transmission structures on the established right-of-way corridor.

With the addition of this new line, residents and businesses in Henrico, Hanover and the Greater Richmond area will benefit from increased reliability. This project will support continued economic development in the region.

Maps

Project Details

Need For The Project

Between 1990 and 2010, this area has experienced a 64% increase in demand for power. Projections indicate loading levels that will require some new facilities and upgrades to alleviate the potential of equipment failure and extended outages.

Dominion’s new line project will:

  • add needed capacity to serve the high growth areas,
  • help strengthen the electrical grid,
  • comply with mandatory NERC Reliability Standards, and
  • improve overall reliability for the community.

For more information:

Project Description
  • The overhead line project will utilize the existing right-of-way corridor which extends from the Northwest Substation to the Lakeside Substation (see map) – approximately 10 miles in Henrico County and 1.5 miles in Hanover County.
  • A new 230 kV line will be installed on existing structures in this right-of-way corridor.
  • Associated equipment will be installed within the fencing at several substations to interconnect the new line.
  • One or more new structures will be added just outside the fence on Dominion’s property at Lakeside, Mountain Road, and Elmont substations.
  • As part of this project, Dominion will also reconductor the existing 230kV line between the Elmont and Northwest Substations.
SCC Approval Process

The State Corporation Commission (SCC) is responsible for determining the need, route and environmental impact of transmission lines at 138 kV and above in Virginia.

Dominion filed an application with the SCC on July 20, 2011. The SCC Hearing Examiner issued a report on Dec. 15, 2011. On February, 24, 2012, the State Corporation Commission issued a Final Order approving the 11.65-mile transmission line between the Northwest, Elmont and Lakeside Substations in Henrico and Hanover Counties.

The application and additional information are available to the public on the SCC Docket Search section of the SCC web site. In addition, interested parties may also comment directly to the SCC by sending an email to sccinfo@scc.virginia.gov.

To learn more about this process, view our SCC process map.

Project Timeline
  • Summer 2011 - Submit application with Virginia State Corporation
  • Winter 2012 - SCC Issues Final Order
  • Early 2012 - Secured necessary permits for construction
  • Spring 2012 - Community outreach and resident notification letters mailed
  • Spring 2012 - Construction activities began on Phase 1(Lakeside – Elmont)
  • Summer 2013 - New conductor pulled over interstate 295
  • Summer/Fall 2013 - Construction activities begin on Phase 2 (Northwest-Elmont)
  • Winter 2014 - New conductor to be pulled over interstate 295
  • Spring 2014 - Target date to energize additional transmission line
Contact Us

Contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Northwest–Elmont–Lakeside 230kV Line.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an easement? Do I still own my property?

Yes, the property owner still owns the land. Easement agreements provide Dominion with a specified set of rights needed to construct, operate and maintain electric facilities across private land.
 

Where can I obtain more information on the project’s SCC application?

The Virginia State Corporation Commission may issue dates for a public hearing and an evidentiary hearing in Richmond. Citizens are encouraged to participate in the process and provide input. The SCC maintains copies of all documents related to the case. Updates about the status of the application can be found on the SCC website at www.scc.virginia.gov.

To learn more about this process, view our SCC process map.

Will Dominion repair damage due to construction?

Yes. The company, at its expense, will repair any private roads damaged by Dominion or its contractors during construction of the line or during future maintenance. In addition, we will reimburse property owners for crop damage and repair or replace fences or gates if they are damaged.
 

What will be the environmental impact of construction of the line?

As part of the SCC application, Dominion completes an evaluation of potential environmental, cultural, and historical impacts of the Dahlgren Project. Dominion works with many local and state agencies to complete these evaluations and mitigate any impacts. The company also submits annual Erosion and Sedimentation (E&S) Control Specifications and an anticipated list of transmission line projects for the construction and maintenance of transmission lines to the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation for review and approval. For program year 2012, this project will be included in the annual submittal for approval prior to construction. Our contractors receive copies of the E&S specifications and any additional permit conditions prior to construction and are directed to meet any requirements. The right-of-way will be rehabilitated when construction is complete.

Our enterprise-wide environmental report describes our commitment to responsible stewardship of natural resources and provides a wealth of information on environmental management and performance. We also invite you to read our Corporate Environmental Policy and our Greenhouse Gas report.
 

Should I be concerned about Electric and Magnetic Fields?

Dominion is sensitive to public concern about possible health effects from exposure to electric and magnetic fields (EMF). Dominion includes data on the levels of both electric and magnetic fields produced by proposed facilities in all applications submitted with the SCC. We continually monitor EMF research and speak to our customers and employees regularly to share the latest information available.

The Virginia SCC, which regulates the construction and operation of electric transmission lines of 138kV and above, considers EMF in every application. Hearing Examiner’s remarks from recent proceedings are below.

  • March 23, 2009 Beaumeade-NIVO (Case Number PUE-2008-00063) Report of Michael D. Thomas, Hearing Examiner concludes that "… electric transmission line electromagnetic fields do not represent a human health hazard.”
  • May 4, 2010 Hayes-Yorktown (Case Number PUE-2009-00049) Report of Deborah V. Ellenberg, Chief Hearing Examiner, states, “I find that EMF has not been identified as a carcinogen for human beings despite extensive study over many years, and there is, therefore, no basis on which to prohibit the Company from authorizing appropriate uses of its right-of-way.”
  • August 23, 2011 Hollymead (Case Number PUE-2011-00015) Report of Michael D. Thomas, Hearing Examiner, states, “The proposed facilities do not represent a hazard to human health, which finding is consistent with the Virginia Department of Health’s report entitled Monitoring of Ongoing Research on the Health Effects of High Voltage Transmission Lines (Final Report) dated October 31, 2000.”

The Virginia Department of Health in its final report evaluating EMF research concluded:

"Based on the review and analysis of the exhaustive literature review and other research projects completed under the EMF-RAPID program, the Virginia Department of Health is of the opinion that there is no conclusive and convincing evidence that exposure to extremely low frequency EMF emanated from nearby high voltage transmission lines is causally associated with an increased incidence of cancer or other detrimental health effects in humans. Even if it is assumed that there is an increased risk of cancer as implied in some epidemiologic studies, the empirical relative risk appears to be fairly small in magnitude and the observed association appears to be tenuous. The studies published in the literature lack clear demonstration of a cause and effect relationship as well as a definitive dose-response gradient."

Additional information:

How can I learn more about the electric transmission system?
  • The 21st Century Grid: This July 2010 article from National Geographic describes the electric grid and our modern day energy challenge.
  • The modern "electric grid," referring to the powerlines that supply your home with electricity, receives power from many sources and types of generation including wind, coal, natural gas, and hydroelectric and others. There is not a one-to-one connection between any fuel source and customer. Get more information on how the grid works.
  • Learn how the electric grid operates and how power gets to your home.
  • Check out the interactive simulations available on the Department of Energy website. You can also see how a few simple changes at home can lower your own consumption — and your bill!
  • So where is all the power going? Find out who the big users are on an information-packed site from Virginia’s State Corporation Commission.
  • Dominion recently launched a Green Power initiative that you might be interested in reviewing. You also can learn about Dominion’s other Conservation Programs, including Smart Grids.
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