Last month, ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR reported that the Virginia State Corporation Commission authorized construction of the Virginia segments of the Trans-Allegheny Interstate Line (TrAIL). Now, the Trans-Allegheny Interstate Line Co. (TrAILCo), a subsidiary of Allegheny Energy Inc., reports that the project has cleared another regulatory hurdle with a motion passed by the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission approving construction of a 1.2-mile segment of the transmission project in the state.

The 1.2-mile segment will extend south from the new 502 Junction substation in Greene County to the West Virginia border. The segment is the starting point of TrAIL, a 215-mile, 500-kilovolt project that will traverse parts of West Virginia and extend into Northern Virginia.

As requested by TrAILCo, the Pennsylvania Commission has deferred its decision on a proposed 36-mile segment of the line extending north from the 502 Junction substation into central Washington County. This section was designed to address local reliability issues. TrAILCo now will enter into a collaborative process to identify potential alternatives to resolve local reliability issues anticipated to occur in Washington County by 2009. The commission also approved a related settlement agreement between TrAILCo and Greene County that proposed the collaborative process.

TrAILCo will continue its preconstruction activities, such as right-of-way acquisition, permitting and engineering activities, in all three states. The construction phase will last about two and one-half years, with TrAIL targeted for completion by June 2011.