APS continually monitors its electrical system and, when necessary, adds or upgrades facilities. These improvements enhance reliability and help ensure that an adequate supply of electric power is available to customers.
The purpose of this project is to increase the reliability in the area by connecting the McGuireville Substation (located near Cornville Road and Restoration Loop) and the Oak Creek Substation (near Highway 179 and Jacks Canyon Road) with a new 69kV sub-transmission line. This will minimize the loss of the ability to serve customers in the Oak Creek area, McGuireville, and Cornville in the event of outages on either the existing Verde to Capital Butte 69kV line, and/or the Quail Springs to McGuireville 69kV line.
The primary reason for connecting the project at both the Oak Creek and McGuireville substations is that the substations are each at the end of long radial segments of line. A radial line is a line that serves a substation without a redundant or backup power line from another source. By connecting Oak Creek and McGuireville substations, it connects the radial power lines at each substation, and provides backup for each line as described above.
The new segments of the 69kV power line will be built on steel poles and will be a single 69kV circuit configuration (three wires per circuit). Some portions of the line, depending on routing, may consolidate with existing single circuit poles creating a double 69kV circuit configuration (six total wires on the same pole). The new 69kV power line may be constructed in a new alignment or added in areas where some lines already exist. It is anticipated that any new poles would be approximately 65 feet in height, similar to existing 69kV lines in the area. The line segments would require a right-of-way or easement approximately 30 to 40 feet in width to construct, operate, and maintain the facility.
In mid 2018, APS hired Environmental Planning Group (EPG) to assist in evaluating route alternatives, to assess potential environmental impacts, and to support the public outreach process. Baseline information about land use, visual, biological, cultural, and recreational resources for the area has been collected. This information has been used for the development of preliminary route alternatives within the study area. Because the route alignment will cross U.S. Forest Service land, we are coordinating with the Coconino National Forest Red Rock Ranger District, and will move forward with future permitting efforts in the next phases of the siting process.
When developing route alternatives, APS evaluates many criteria, including: environmental impacts, engineering and construction feasibility, land acquisition timing and costs, regulatory approvals, potential impacts to existing and planned neighborhoods, and input from agencies and the public.
APS and EPG have identified a project study area and have held briefings with jurisdictional representatives including the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors, Yavapai County Public Works Department, the Big Park Regional Coordinating Council, and the Beaver Creek Community Association, about the proposed project, and to solicit input from them.
public input is important