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Several projects in the works to prevent overloading of electrical system due to area growth; Canyon Country solution coming in 2013
| Friday, Feb 17, 2012

Out with the old...

The Santa Clarita Valley is overloaded – and Southern California Edison is planning to do something about it.

Starting in April, Edison intends to replace eight of its giant lattice steel transmission towers in the Valencia Industrial Center with even taller tubular steel poles, in order to “address overload conditions.”

Called the Saugus-Colossus-Lockeed-Pitchgen 66 Kilovolt Reconductor Project – named for the affected Edison substations – the replacement involves a 1.2-mile stretch of power lines extending from the Saugus Substation on the south (at “Edison curve” on Magic Mountain Parkway), north across the Santa Clara River and cutting through the Industrial Center to a point just shy of Newhall Ranch Road.

The existing 60- to 88-foot-tall lattice steel towers will be replaced with 85- to 110-foot-tall tubular steel poles fitted with higher-capacity conductors. The work is expected to start April 9 and finish by the end of June, and it comes at a cost of $1.741 million.

Edison says it doesn’t need to go through the city or county approval process for the project because it conforms with California Public Utilities Commission rules for replacement work on an existing Edison easement. It does need final CPUC sign-off, however.

The company says it’s in compliance with requirements for reducing public exposure to electric and magnetic fields (EMF) because of the way the poles are arranged, and because the new poles will be so tall.

... In with the new

According to an Edison document, “The Saugus-Colossus-Lockheed-Pitchgen 66 kV line feeds Colossus Substation in the city (sic) of Valencia and Lockheed Substation and Pitchgen Substation in the city (sic) of Saugus. By 2012, loading on the Saugus leg of the Saugus-Colossus-Lockheed-Pitchgen 66 kV line is projected to exceed its capacity limit due to continuing load growth in the area. The project scope is to replace a total of 1.17 miles of 4/0 Cu and 336 ACSR conductor in the Saugus leg of the Saugus-Colossus-Lockheed-Pitchgen 66 kV line with higher capacity rated 954 ACSR conductor.

“Without this project, loading on the Saugus leg of the Saugus-Colossus-Lockheed-Pitchgen 66 kV line is projected to reach 104 percent of its capacity by 2012 under N-1 line outage conditions.”

Similar load-reducing projects are on the books for the Santa Clarita Valley 2013.

The biggest one, at a cost of $38.256 million, involves the installation of a new bank of transformers at the Saugus Substation, and splitting the 66-kilovolt system.

Example of a tubular steel pole in Madrid, Spain

Per the Edison document: “Saugus 220/66 kV Substation is located in the city (sic) of Saugus and serves the areas of Castaic, Chatsworth, Fillmore, Newhall, San Fernando, Santa Clarita, Santa Susana, Saugus, and Valencia. By 2013, Saugus 220/66 kV Substation is projected to exceed its capacity limit due to continuing load growth in the area. The project scope is to install a new 280 MVA transformer bank at Saugus 220/66 kV Substation – thereby increasing total transformer capacity from 840 MVA to 1120 MVA at the station – and split the Saugus 66 kV system. Without the project, the loading at Saugus 220/66 kV Substation is projected to reach 103.5 percent of the substation’s capacity limit by 2013 under ‘high case’ load forecast conditions.”

Less costly projects planned for the SCV in 2013 include the installation of a new underground vault and a second, parallel 0.8-mile conduit system to serve the North Oaks area in Canyon Country (known as the Saugus-Appgen-Newhall & Appgen-North Oaks 66 kV project), at a cost of $2.138 million; and  $2.973 million replacement of 1.97 miles of conductor in Castaic, between the Saugus and Elizabeth Lake substations.

Public comments about the Saugus-Colossus-Lockheed-Pitchgen project can be directed to the CPUC at this address: California Public Utilities Commission, Energy Division, 505 Van Ness Ave. 4th Floor, San Francisco CA 94102. Edison requests copies be sent to Southern California Edison Co., Law Department Exception Mail, 2244 Walnut Grove Ave., Rosemead CA 91770.

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