PGE proposes shrinking transmission project by 101 miles
By Erik Siemers
Portland General Electric is proposing a shortened version of the Cascade Crossing transmission line project.
Portland General Electric said it wants to shave 101 miles off its proposed Cascade Crossing transmission by making making use of the federal Bonneville Power Administration's existing transmission infrastructure.
The Portland-based electric utility initially proposed a 215-mile transmission project starting at Boardman and connecting to Salem. But under the modified plan, the project would instead stop short 18 miles southwest of Maupin — 101 miles shorter than the original plan — at a new substation called Pine Grove that PGE would build.
From there the line would link up with the BPA's system, said PGE spokesman Steve Corson.
As part of an agreement with the BPA, PGE would invest in enhancements to the power grid or exchange assets with BPA to increase capacity on the system. The end result, PGE says, is reduced congestion and enhanced reliability.
In exchange for its investments, PGE would receive up to 2,600-megawatts of transmission capacity ownership rights so that it can deliver power customers in Portland and the Willamette Valley.
"We'll be building a new substation to connect into their system and other enhancements to their system that will let both them and us make more efficient use of the assets put together than we'd be able to do on our own," Corson said.
In shaving 101 miles off the route, PGE said it also avoids having the project impacting the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs Reservation, the Mt. Hood and Willamette national forests and private forest and agricultural land in Marion and Linn counties.
BPA will conduct a formal stakeholder review process before it finalizes an agreement. PGE, meanwhile, will file amendments to the public permitting applications for the project.
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