New high-voltage power line will support growing EV industry in Ohio

Construction Underway on New FirstEnergy High-Voltage Line to Support Growing Electric Vehicle Industry in Lordstown. Credit: FirstEnergy

The second phase of construction on new electric transmission infrastructure in Trumbull County, Ohio, is underway, said FirstEnergy Corp. yesterday in a press release. The line is being constructed to support the energy demands of the area’s rapidly expanding electric vehicle (EV) industry. The work is also expected to help reduce the frequency and duration of power outages experienced by Ohio Edison customers in the area.

As part of the $12 million project, FirstEnergy utility workers are building a new, high-voltage power line in Lordstown to accommodate the projected future energy needs of Ultium Cells LLC – an EV battery-cell manufacturing plant jointly backed by General Motors and South Korea’s LG Energy Solution.

The new 138-kilovolt (kV) line extends approximately 3.5 miles to connect electric substations in the area and will strengthen the regional transmission system to benefit more than 15,000 Ohio Edison customers in Lordstown and nearby communities. When completed, the new line will offer a backup power feed that will help keep the lights on for customers if wires or equipment on their regular line are damaged or need to be taken out of service.

To help minimize the project’s impact on local communities and the environment, two miles of the new power line will utilize existing steel towers along a FirstEnergy transmission corridor, said the company. The remaining work will require new construction of steel and wood structures. The project is expected to be completed in early 2022.

The work underway builds upon the company’s completion of an approximately $20 million project, which included building a new transmission substation and a short, high-voltage power line to provide electric service to Ultium Cells LLC’s nearly 3 million-square-foot facility, which is expected to bring more than 1000 jobs to the area.

Additional work completed in the area includes the installation of new automated technology and equipment to enhance service reliability for hundreds of residents and businesses.

In recognition of its efforts, FirstEnergy was named by Site Selection magazine in 2021 as a “Top 20” utility for expertise in promoting economic development. Over the past five years, FirstEnergy has helped attract more than 30,000 new jobs and $17.5 billion in third-party capital investment in its six-state service area. In Ohio alone, FirstEnergy helped attract nearly 7,700 jobs and $2.6 billion in third-party capital investment in 2020.

Ohio Edison serves more than one million customers across 34 Ohio counties.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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