Corporate

Ox-Minnieville Line Project

Construction Update

The rebuild is now complete and the transmission line is energized. Restoration of the right-of-way has begun and will continue through the summer to ensure grass is well-established in the corridor.

Dominion Virginia Power is committed to providing reliable electricity for its customers, which sometimes requires the upgrade of electric facilities. To meet area demand, Dominion has upgraded an existing 115kV (kilovolt) transmission line extending approximately 8-miles through Fairfax County and Prince William County.

Over the last decade, Prince William County has grown by 43.2% – the second highest growth by County in Virginia; with a more than 100,000 person increase in Fairfax County within the same time period. 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).

Project Details

Project Description

The overhead line project utilizes the existing right-of-way corridor, and begins at the Ox Substation in Fairfax County, continuing approximately 1.5 miles south, crossing the Occoquan River into Prince William County. From this point, the line heads southward  for approximately 2 miles before angling westward for approximately 3.2 miles towards the Minnieville Substation (see map).

View a presentation to learn more about the need for this project.

Fairfax County Details

The project has replaced approximately 1.5 miles of the transmission line from the Occoquan River north to Ox Substation, just off Roseland Drive.

New steel monopoles replaced the previous wooden H-frame structures in the center of the existing right-of-way (see structure rendering). While the new structures are taller, they are complimentary in height to the towers on either side – creating matching width spans and reducing the visual impact along the corridor.

This section of the transmission line was built in 1948 and is situated between two other lines – a double circuit 230kV and a 500 kV transmission line.

Prince William County Details

Over the last decade, Prince William County has experienced a 43.2% increase in population – the second highest growth by county in Virginia. This project will support projected growth in this immediate area.

Construction Updates

Rebuild

The north to south running portion of the line is approximately 2.06 miles from the Occoquan River to a point just north of Omiscol Rd (and south of Lake Omiscol) – the "Minnieville Junction." 

New steel monopoles replaced the existing wooden H-frame structures in the center of the existing right-of-way (see structure rendering). While the new structures are taller, they are complimentary in height to the towers on either side – creating matching width spans and reducing the visual impact along the corridor.

Additional Work

The westerly/southwesterly portion of the line runs from the above described "Minnieville Junction" approximately 3.2 miles to the Minnieville substation delivery point. This section of the line utilizes existing structures to pull in new conductor. Repairs to the existing structures were made as necessary upon inspection. Three of the existing structures were replaced entirely.

This portion of the line was constructed in 1964 and shares the right-of-way with a 500kV line.

Fact Sheets
Maps & Illustrations
Need for the Project

Between 2000 – 2010, the population in Prince William County has grown by 43.2% – the second highest growth by County in Virginia. In Fairfax County, there has been an 11.5% growth in population. Projections indicate loading levels that will require some new facilities and upgrades to alleviate the potential of equipment failure and extended outages.

With the addition of this new line, the community area will benefit from increased reliability in support of growing capacity and economic development in the region.

Project Timeline
  • Fall 2011 — Submit application to local planning commissions; Initial community outreach
  • Spring 2012 — Secure necessary permits for construction
  • Spring 2012 — Community outreach and resident notification of intent to construct
  • Summer 2012 — Construction scheduled to begin
  • Spring 2013 — Target date to energize line

Contact Us

Contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Ox-Minnieville Line Project.

Questions and Answers

Will Dominion require additional right-of-way?

This rebuild project will utilize the existing 300-foot right-of way corridor along the entire length of the project.

How will the completion of this project benefit me as a resident?

The rebuilt line decreases the likelihood of outages, and potentially shortens outage durations, should they occur, to area residents. In addition, the new steel monopole structures have the capacity to be upgraded to 230kV capacity with minimal community disturbance, if future need is identified.

Will the new towers look the same as what’s already in the right-of-way?

The new towers are steel monopole structures which are approximately 50-feet taller than the existing H-frame structures, however do not exceed the height of existing towers currently in the right-of-way (see structure rendering).

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

As part of our regulatory applications, Dominion completes an evaluation of potential environmental, cultural, and historical impacts of the 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 for the construction and maintenance of transmission lines to the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation for review and approval. This project will be submitted 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.

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:

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