About the Project

As part of our commitment to provide safe, reliable service to all our customers, New York State Electric & Gas Corporation (NYSEG), in conjunction with its parent company AVANGRID, is investing in new electric infrastructure within the Towns of Ghent and Stockport. This project, known as the Columbia County Transmission Project (CCTP), will enhance safe, reliable electricity service for approximately 10,000 NYSEG customers by bringing a new source of electricity into the area. The CCTP includes construction of a new substation, two new 115-kV transmission lines which will tap into an existing high voltage transmission line and two new 34.5-kV distribution lines.

Project Map

Project Scope

The CCTP includes the following three primary components, as depicted on the map above:

  1. Construction of a new 115-/34.5-kV substation, the Falls Park Substation, in the Town of Ghent. The substation is being constructed on an approximately 4-acre portion of a larger parcel in the Town of Ghent off of Falls Industrial Park Road. The Falls Park Substation will be comprised of a new power transformer, circuit breakers, a control building, and other infrastructure, equipment and hardware required for the safe and proper operation of the substation;
  2. Construction of two new 115-kV transmission lines running from an existing high voltage transmission line in the Town of Stockport to the Falls Park Substation in the Town of Ghent. The two 115-kV lines will run in a parallel configuration and in a generally east/northeast direction for a distance of approximately 1.1 miles from an existing National Grid 115-kV transmission line to the Falls Park Substation. The 115-kV transmission line structures will be single-circuit galvanized steel monopole structures; and
  3. Construction of two 34.5-kV distribution lines in the Town of Ghent from the new Falls Park Substation which will be comprised of a 34.5-kV double circuit and two 34.5-kV single circuits. The double circuit (dark green line in the map above) will be installed on single poles from the new Falls Park Substation to Falls Industrial Park Road to NYS Route 9H south to County Route (CR) 22. At CR 22 the double circuit will split. One circuit (Feeder 1, light green and blue lines in the map above) will be rebuilt and upgraded south on NYS Route 9H and Old Post Road to Columbia County Airport Road (old CR 20), for approximately 3.3 miles. The other line (Feeder 2, yellow line in the map above) will be rebuilt and upgraded along CR 22 to Orchard Road to George Road to NYS Route 66, and will run in an east/southeast direction for approximately 4.0 miles. New poles used to construct the 34.5-kV Feeders will typically be 50 to 60 feet tall. These two new circuits will greatly enhance NYSEG's electric reliability in this area. Construction of the distribution lines is anticipated for summer 2019.

Construction Information

Construction of the CCTP commenced in the Spring 2018. Initial activities included the cutting of trees and brush on the 115-kV transmission line right-of-way (ROW) and Falls Park Substation site. This was followed by site preparation of the substation site, which included cutting, filling and grading, and the establishment of access roads on site. During Summer 2018, earthworks continued allowing for foundations, conduit, and ground grids to be installed (in-ground works). Installation of the control building commenced during this time, and the outside of building is finished. Above ground work, including transformer and steel structure installation, is currently in progress and substation construction will be completed in early 2019.

Transmission line work commenced in October 2018. Initial work included the installation of timber matting to protect farm fields and wetlands, followed by the removal of timber and vegetation from the ROW. Foundation drilling crews were mobilized shortly after the installation of mats and in tandem with ongoing vegetation operations. The installation of steel transmission structures commenced in November 2018. This activity will continue through the winter, and will be followed by the stringing of conductor.

Limited installation of distribution line poles commenced in late 2018. Thus far, this work has been limited to the Falls Park Substation access road off of Falls Industrial Park Road.

After all construction activities have been completed, ground cover and vegetation are encouraged to grow back. In some areas vegetative buffers or other landscaping may be installed. Good construction practices will be used to stabilize disturbed soils to promote re-vegetation and progress will be monitored. If any damage occurs to roads, they will be restored to their original state.

The following photos show recent and ongoing construction activity:

 

1) Spring 2018
Initial Tree Cutting Operations


2) Late Spring 2018
Early Grading Activities


3) Summer 2018
Conduit Install Prior to Transformer


4) Summer 2018
Construction of Control House


5) Summer 2018
Steel Poles at Show-up Yard


6) Late Summer 2018
Newly Installed Transformer


7) Fall 2018
Hauling Logs from ROW


8) Fall 2018
Installation of Substation A-Frame


9) Fall 2018
Commencement of Foundation Drilling


10) December 2018
Foundation Drilling Operations


11) December 2018
Setting Transmission Structures


12) January 2019
Distribution Work along Substation Access


Updated January 2019

Permitting

On May 25, 2012, NYSEG filed with the Public Service Commission (PSC) an application for a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need under Article VII of Public Service Law to allow it to build a new 115-kV electric transmission line in the towns of Ghent, Chatham and Stockport, all in Columbia County, New York.  As proposed at that time, CCTP consisted of 11.1 miles of new 115-kV transmission lines in the towns of Ghent, Chatham and Stockport, a new switching station in the Town of Ghent, and the modification of NYSEG’s Klinekill Substation located in the Town of Chatham. In October 2013, the Staff of the Department of Public Service (DPS Staff) and other parties to the Article VII proceeding filed alternative proposals. Following extensive negotiations, NYSEG agreed to pursue a 34.5-kV alternative to the original 11.1 mile 115-kV Article VII Application, the scope of which is included in a Joint Stipulation dated July 14, 2015. The Joint Stipulation was signed by numerous parties, including NYSEG, DPS Staff, DEC, the Town of Ghent, and Protect Ghent.  

Under the Joint Stipulation, NYSEG agreed to submit to the PSC a report under 16 NYCRR Part 102 (Part 102 Report) for construction of the two 115-kV tap lines. Along with the Part 102 Report, NYSEG filed a petition for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity under Section 68 of the Public Service Law for the westernmost portion of the 115-kV tap lines located in the Town of Stockport, and an Environmental Assessment Form covering the entire project with the intent that the PSC would act as lead agency and conduct a coordinated State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) review of the project. On December 14, 2017, the PSC approved an Order Adopting a Negative Declaration, Determining that no Further Investigation is Warranted Under Part 102, and Dismissing Petition for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity.

In addition to the PSC filings, NYSEG obtained authorization of construction activities in federally-regulated wetlands from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, filed a SWPPP with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), obtained a DEC wetland permit, and filed permits with the New York State Department of Transportation. Public utilities that build or modify their distribution facilities on, under, or above the public streets, roads, highways, and public places where the utility holds franchise rights generally do not seek or receive approvals from the local governments for such work. However, NYSEG agreed, solely for this project, to obtain approvals from the towns of Ghent and Stockport, including Site Plan Approvals, Special Use Permits, and associated Zoning Variances. These were all obtained in early 2018 following the completion of the coordinated SEQRA review.


How Does the Electric System Work?

New York’s electric grid consists of high-voltage transmission lines and low-voltage distribution lines that transport electricity from power generation plants to areas that need electricity throughout the state.

  • New York electricity generators include both regulated electric utilities and independent power producers with diverse energy sources of generation.
  • Natural gas, nuclear power, and hydroelectricity typically provide nine-tenths of net electricity generation, with wind, biomass, coal, and petroleum making up the balance.
  • Near generation facilities, power enters a "step-up" substation that increases the voltage.
  • High-voltage transmission lines carry the power over long distances to various parts of the state.
  • The high-voltage lines enter a "step-down" substation, where they are transformed into a lower-voltage for transmission within the region.
  • Many large industrial and commercial customers receive service directly from the lower voltage transmission lines. For distribution to smaller residential and commercial areas, the lines enter another step-down substation.
  • Distribution lines carry the power through towns and neighborhoods. Small transformers on the poles reduce the electricity to 120-240 volts for each home's use.

New York State Electric & Gas (NYSEG)

NYSEG, a subsidiary of AVANGRID, serves 881,000 electricity customers and 263,000 natural gas customers across more than 40% of upstate New York. Affiliated with Iberdrola SA, AVANGRID owns eight electricity, natural gas or combination utilities in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, and New York. The utilities serve 2.2 million electricity customers, 930,000 natural gas customers, and are recognized for safe, reliable energy delivery, excellent customer service, and a commitment to the community and environment.

For more information, visit nyseg.com and avangrid.com

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