On Sept. 16, 2009, Oncor Electric Delivery Company, LLC (Oncor), in Docket No. 37408, submitted its application for a CCN for the Riley-Bowman 345 kV double circuit transmission line. Formerly known as the Oklaunion-Bowman project, the line will extend from the Electric Transmission Texas, LLC (ETT) Riley Station, located in the southeastern portion of Wilbarger County, Texas, through the southwestern portion of Wichita County, to the existing Oncor Bowman Switching Station in the northern portion of Archer County, Texas. ERCOT originally identified the line for termination at AEP’s Oklaunion Generating Station facility, but AEP indicated that the Station was not designed to serve as a mid-point hub for wind energy transport paths. AEP identified the construction of the new Riley Station on the east of the Oklaunion Generating Station; ERCOT concurred with this alternative.
The Preferred Route for the project is approximately 49 miles long. Oncor plans to use double-circuit lattice steel towers; the typical structure will be 120 feet tall. Double-circuit steel lattice towers were selected over single poles because they are “the most cost efficient structure” for areas of lower density development. Oncor expects to energize the facilities in December 2011. The estimated total cost of the project is $49,350,000.
The Commission previously determined a need for the project in Docket No. 33672 and identified it as a Priority Project that is needed to address existing transmission issues, regardless of the development of additional wind generation in Texas. The Commission found that the CCN application for this project is exempt from addressing the need criteria in Texas statutes.
Oncor retained Haiff Associates, Inc. to prepare an Environmental Assessment (EA) and a comprehensive routing study for the project. The application describes the process routing study and public meetings for the project. A memo from Robert Holt provided as Attachment No. 5 includes specific discussion regarding evaluation and selection of the Preferred Route and alternate routes to be filed with the application.
Two public meetings were hosted by Oncor in April 2009, with fewer than 100 people attending the meetings. There are 8 habitable structures located within 500 feet of the centerline of the Preferred Route.
Oncor submitted the Direct Testimony of four witnesses at the same time it submitted its application.
Brenda Perkins – President of BJ Perkins Corporation. His testimony addresses the overall project; the proposed design and construction of the facilities, including the necessary right-of-way requirements; the project schedule and financing; the company’s cost estimates; compliance with notice requirements, identification of any neighboring utilities and municipalities; and any engineering issues associated with the project.
Kenneth Donahoo – Director of System Planning, Distribution and Transmission at Oncor. His testimony introduces the witnesses testifying on behalf of Oncor; addresses facility and transmission line project name changes; and discusses the differences between the proposed project and what was presented in the CREZ Transmission Optimization Study (CTO).
Russell Marusak – Environmental consultant with Haiff Associates, Inc. His testimony introduces, supports, sponsors, and describes the environmental assessment and alternative route analysis (EA) for the project.
Robert Holt – Regulatory Product Manager for Oncor. His testimony addresses the public participation process; additional permitting that could be necessary; selection of the preferred and alternative routes; the adequacy of Oncor’s geographically diverse routes; and compliance with notice requirements.