CenterPoint files to upgrade, build transmission lines along Texas Gulf Coast

CenterPoint Energy’s electric utility submitted a proposal to the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) requesting its endorsement for CenterPoint to enhance existing, and construct new, electric transmission infrastructure.

This project would meet the unprecedented load growth of the petrochemical industry in the Freeport, Texas area.

This growth includes new committed load expected to total about 1,340 MW, which is planned to go into service at varying stages between 2017 and 2019. The company expects to have the proposed enhancements complete by summer 2019 and the proposed new line is anticipated to be in service in 2021.

The nearly $250 million transmission project includes enhancements to two existing substations and construction of a new 345 kilovolt double-circuit transmission line. Capital expenditures for the project would be incremental to the five-year capital plan as disclosed in the 2016 Form 10-K.

“We are fortunate to serve an area that continues to experience growth and expansion in the petrochemical industry,” said Kenny Mercado, senior vice president of CenterPoint Energy’s Electric Operations. “This project is critical to reliability due to the magnitude of new load being added to the area.”

The proposed project timeline takes into consideration the typical lead times necessary to implement the proposed enhancements and construction, including review by ERCOT and the Public Utility Commission of Texas. The company anticipates a decision by the fourth quarter of 2017.

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