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 study identified the need for two, 345-kilovolt transmission lines in Nebraska. The R-Project refers to a line segment that will run from NPPD’s Gerald Gentleman Station north to the Cherry County area and then east to the Holt/Antelope County line where it will tie into a 345,000-volt line owned by the Western Area Power Administration. The other line segment, which is also being built by NPPD but is not a part of the R-Project, will run from NPPD’s Hoskins substation located southwest of Hoskins to a new substation in the Neligh 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 project cost estimate is $313 million. Of that amount, approximately $281 million is for transmission line work and the remaining money is budgeted for substation expenses.
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.