Milvon to West River transmission rebuild replaces 100-year-old infrastructure
ORANGE, CT – April 14, 2022 – Today, the United Illuminating Company (UI) — a subsidiary of AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR) — announced a significant transmission line rebuild replacing approximately 9.5 miles of monopoles along the Connecticut Department of Transportation (ConnDOT) railroad corridor from Milford to New Haven. This is one of many projects UI is undertaking — known as the Railroad T-Line Rebuild Program — that will separate UI’s transmission lines from the railroad catenary structures, some of which were installed over 100 years ago. The estimated project investment is slated at around $300M.
“UI, which serves a population of more than 750,000, is making major investments like the Milvon to West River rebuild to improve the resiliency of our electric grid,” said UI President & CEO Frank Reynolds. “This project will also ensure we can provide safe and reliable power to help meet the growing demands of our customers.”
The Milvon to West River Transmission Line 115-kV Rebuild Project will include a work area focused on the overhead transmission line assets. It involves removing 115-kV lines from the railroad catenary structures and rebuilding the lines on double-circuit monopoles for approximately 9.5 miles between UI’s Milvon Substation in Milford and West River Substation in New Haven. The underlying infrastructure for the project is designed to have an approximate 40-year service life. Further, the rebuilt 115-kV lines will conform to current industry and UI standards to withstand extreme weather conditions, such as Category 3 hurricane wind loads.
During this project, UI will install approximately 160 galvanized steel double circuit transmission poles rising from a single footing. The heights of the proposed structures will vary from 70 feet to 170 feet tall depending on structure location, span length and the existing built environment. The typical span length between structures ranges from approximately 300 and 400 feet. However, in some locations, longer spans (up to 800 feet) were warranted to minimize impacts to environmental resources, like wetlands, culturally sensitive resources, and for nearby land uses like parking lots, roadways, railroad spurs and steep terrain.
For this project, UI will carefully coordinate construction with ConnDOT along with Metro-North Railroad (MNR) in order to avoid or minimize conflicts with rail operations. As a result, UI anticipates that construction activities will be scheduled for the majority during daytime hours but in certain instances nighttime hours or around-the-clock construction may be necessary to accommodate the construction schedule along with other stakeholders in this project.
In some areas, UI will have to acquire new permanent easements from adjacent landowners. UI also will need new temporary easements during construction to install work pads and access roads – as required to safely remove the existing 115-kV facilities and install the new 115-kV lines. UI will perform construction activities consistent with approvals from the Connecticut Siting Council (CSC) and other State and Federal agencies such as Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and the US Army Corp of Engineers. UI will strive to minimize any impacts on residences and businesses in the vicinity of the construction area and plans to coordinate with residents or businesses for access as needed for construction.
UI’s current plans call for project construction on the first segment to begin in late 2023. As the work on each segment is near completion, construction on the next segment will start. The final segment is expected to be completed by the fall of 2028, with final restoration activities expected to extend into 2029. UI customers should not experience any power outages as a result of this construction.
“We are meeting the community’s growing energy demands while working closely with town officials, local tree wardens and with residents and customers to ensure that all improvements are performed safely and with minimal disruption to the environment and the community,” concluded Reynolds.
For residents and business owners seeking more information on this project, please contact the Projects Outreach Team at UI by calling 888.848.3697 during regular business hours, or by visiting online.
About UI: The United Illuminating Company (UI) is a subsidiary of AVANGRID, Inc. Established in 1899, UI operates approximately 3,600 miles of electric distribution lines and 138 miles of transmission lines. It serves approximately 341,000 customers in the greater New Haven and Bridgeport areas of Connecticut. UI received the Edison Electric Institute’s Emergency Recovery Award in 2019 and 2021. For more information, visit uinet.com.
About AVANGRID: AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR) aspires to be the leading sustainable energy company in the United States. Headquartered in Orange, CT with approximately $39 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states, AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving more than 3.3 million customers in New York and New England. Avangrid Renewables owns and operates a portfolio of renewable energy generation facilities across the United States. AVANGRID employs approximately 7,000 people and has been recognized by Forbes and Just Capital as one of the 2021 JUST 100 companies - a list of America's best corporate citizens - and was ranked number one within the utility sector for its commitment to the environment and the communities it serves. The company supports the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals and was named among the World’s Most Ethical Companies in 2021 for the third consecutive year by the Ethisphere Institute. For more information, visit avangrid.com.
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