ComEd to hold next series of high-voltage line open houses
From Submitted Reports September 30, 2013 4:36PM
Updated: November 2, 2013 6:21AM
ComEd will host a third series of open houses this month on proposed routes for the Grand Prairie Gateway Project, a new high-voltage electric transmission line to be constructed between ComEd’s existing substations near Byron and Wayne.
The new line will connect these substations and travel across Ogle, DeKalb, Kane and DuPage counties, and will serve customers throughout northern Illinois.
ComEd representatives will be on hand to answer questions related to the proposed line and transmission structures and the next steps in the process, which include submitting an application for approval from the Illinois Commerce Commission.
The need for the new transmission line was identified by PJM Interconnection, the independent regional transmission grid operator and planner for the ComEd service territory, according to a release from the company.
PJM selected the Grand Prairie Gateway Project as the best solution for addressing current system congestion and ensuring the continued efficient flow of electricity across northern Illinois, the release said. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regulations require these upgrades to relieve congestion on ComEd’s transmission system.
Transmission system congestion limits the amount of electricity that can be delivered into an area. If demand for electricity is high, then power purchasers must buy more often from higher-cost suppliers, and the result is higher electricity costs for customers, ComEd said.
The proposed line will alleviate congestion and reduce costs, according to ComEd. Adding a third path across the northern portion of the service territory also provides ComEd with greater flexibility and options for maintaining the transmission system and meeting customer needs, it said.
The three public open house sessions scheduled are:
Oct. 8, 4-8 p.m., Calvary Lighthouse Church, 14409 Hemstock Road, Rochelle.
Oct. 9, 4-8 p.m., Kane County Fairgrounds, The Prairie Events Center, 525 S. Randall Road, St. Charles.
Oct. 10, 4-8 p.m., DeKalb County Farm Bureau, 1350 W. Prairie Drive, Sycamore.
ComEd has expanded the hours of the open houses in response to customer feedback, the release said. ComEd chose the locations to allow residents in each county to participate, and each open house will feature the same information, it said.
“We are making the investments needed to meet the energy requirements of our region and to protect customers from the increased costs caused by constraints on our system,” said Terence Donnelly, executive vice president and chief operating officer for ComEd. “It is our responsibility to maintain an efficient and effective transmission system, and we are grateful for the input of the communities we have received throughout this planning process.”
ComEd expects to file a request for approval of the transmission line with the ICC before the end of 2013, and the ICC has about eight months to announce its decision. The new line is anticipated to be in service by June 2017.
More information is available at ComEd.com/GrandPrairieGateway or by calling the project hotline at 1-877-279-4732.