Q & A’s
Who determined the R-Project transmission line was needed?
NPPD is a member of the Southwest Power Pool (SPP), a regional transmission organization. The SPP conducted a study, also known as the Integrated Transmission Plan, to assess the needs of the entire transmission network within the SPP region over the next 10 years. The R-Project consists of routing and siting a new electric transmission line that will run from NPPD’s Gerald Gentleman Station near Sutherland north to a new substation to be sited adjacent to NPPD’s existing substation east of Thedford. The new line will then proceed east and connect to a second substation to be sited near the existing Western Area Power Administration (WAPA) 345,000 volt transmission line in the Holt/Antelope/Wheeler County area.
Who will benefit from this line?
The line will be an integral part of the 345-kilovolt network that serves Nebraska. This is the backbone system that carries bulk energy across the state. That same energy is eventually used by homes, businesses, industrial and commercial operations. Although the wires don’t go directly to your home, they connect into the system at other locations to ultimately provide that energy to you.
Is the line route known?
The line route for the R-Project transmission line is not known at this time. The final route will be determined after a thorough siting study and a comprehensive public involvement process, including open houses, public hearings, newsletters and more. NPPD’s goal is to minimize impact and find the most suitable route regarding items such as land use, public comment, environmental constraints, constructability, cost and electric system performance.
What will you do to restore the Sand Hills after line construction?
One of NPPD’s goals throughout the transmission line siting and routing process is to minimize impacts of the project to landowners’ property. Where damages occur that need to be repaired, we will seek landowner input on their respective restoration experiences and will also consult with a variety of agencies who have restoration experts on staff. The types of structures we will use for this project is unknown at this time, but before making any decisions, we will consider the impacts of the various structure types on the Sand Hills. During planning, we will also study the impacts of alternative construction methods. After line construction, it is one of our priorities to restore the Sand Hills to as close to their original state as possible. To do so will require NPPD and landowners to work together closely.
What is the cost of the project?
The total line project cost estimate is $328 million.
When will line construction occur?
Transmission line construction for the R-Project line is expected to begin in the summer of 2016 with an in-service date of Jan. 1, 2018.