Power is now flowing through the first new transmission lines built in New York state in several decades.
Representatives of New York Transco, an energy transmission developer and Harris Beach client, joined leaders from the New York Independent Service Organization (NYISO), New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), New York Public Service Commission (PSC), labor unions and other community and business officials to celebrate the electrification of the New York Energy Solution transmission project.
That project involved construction of 55 miles of modernized AC transmission lines through Rensselaer, Columbia and Dutchess counties in New York. New York Energy Solution is an integral aspect of the state’s push to convert its electric grid to renewable energy sources over the next two decades. The state has set a goal of being at 100% zero-emission energy by 2040.
In the two years since the New York State PSC unanimously approved New York Transco’s Article VII application, the company has successfully removed aging infrastructure in favor of more 456 storm-resilient and higher-capacity transmission monopiles through 11 New York towns.
Harris Beach Partners Bill Flynn, John McManus and Aubrey Ohanian, supported by the firm’s Energy Industry Team, provided NY Transco with legal counsel leading to the milestone approval of the project’s Article VII application.
The new lines along with new and upgraded substations, all on existing utility-owned lands, will help relieve historic transmission congestion and provide the carrying capacity needed to deliver increasing amounts of renewable energy from northern New York generating sources to homes and businesses in the Hudson Valley and beyond, Transco said in a press release. The project finished six months ahead of schedule and used more than one million consecutive safe work hours from participating labor union partners.
NY Transco notes that a distinguishing aspect of the project was deep and long-standing collaboration with “host communities, project neighbors, agricultural operators, utilities, and many other stakeholders along the project route” That collaboration included open collection of community feedback to improve project design, minimize construction-related impacts, and reduce project costs.
“Congratulations to the New York Transco team for this accomplishment,” Energy Industry Team Leader Bill Flynn said following the ribbon-cutting. “The project team’s intentional focus on communicating with community partners throughout the project – before, during and after construction – sets an impressive standard and is one of the reasons for the project finishing ahead of schedule. We’re looking forward to continuing to support renewable energy projects across New York.”
NY Transco is also in the early phases of Propel NY Energy, a collaboration with the New York Power Authority that will build out the transmission backbone on Long Island and across parts of New York City and Westchester County.