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PG&E Announces Proposed Project to Strengthen Grid and Improve Reliability in Southern Santa Clara County

PG&E Corporate Relations 408-282-7140

Morgan Hill, Calif.— Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) today announced a new infrastructure project to increase the capacity and reliability of the electric system serving southern Santa Clara County including Gilroy, Morgan Hill and surrounding communities. Known as South County Power Connect, the proposed project will include building a new substation and two new transmission lines, as well as upgrading surrounding transmission lines. These critical investments will allow PG&E to respond to the growing energy demands of its 43,000 electric customers in the region.


PG&E is hosting three open house meetings where the community can learn more about the project, how it will benefit them and provide feedback. The meetings are planned for September 22, 24 and 28 and will be held in San Martin, Gilroy and Morgan Hill, respectively.


Meetings will take place:


  • On Sept. 22, from 4-6 p.m., at the Wings of History Museum Clubhouse, 12777 Murphy Ave., San Martin
  • On Sept. 24, 5-7:30 p.m., at the Las Animas Veterans Park Recreation Building, 400 Mantelli Drive, Gilroy
  • On Sept. 28, from 4-6:30 p.m., at the Morgan Hill Community and Cultural Center, El Toro Room, 17000 Monterey Road, Morgan Hill

More details regarding the project can be found by visiting www.pge.com/southcountypc.


"South County Power Connect is vital in our efforts to provide reliable and efficient energy service to our customers," said Teresa Davies, senior manager of PG&E's San Jose Division. "We encourage area residents and business owners to come out to one of our upcoming open houses and talk with our team to learn more about how this project will allow us to respond to changing energy demands and continue providing our customers with safe and reliable service."


Southern Santa Clara County has experienced rapid growth that has driven the need for new investments in the electric system. South County Power Connect will strengthen the power grid by facilitating the integration of new renewable energy sources and increasing the electric system's capacity, which helps provide the flexibility needed to adapt to energy demands and protect against outages. The project will ensure the electric system can accommodate the region's planned growth and is part of PG&E's commitment to providing an efficient, safe and reliable grid for the 16 million people PG&E serves in California.


PG&E will work with the community in selecting a substation location and route alignment for South County Power Connect. The new substation will connect to the existing Morgan Hill-Llagas 115 kV line and one of the Metcalf-Moss Landing 230 kV lines. The proposed project will also include upgrades to a portion of the existing 115 kV transmission line that will connect the new substation to the existing Morgan Hill Substation.


Tuesday, February 16; 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Morgan Hill Community and Cultural Center, Hiram Room
17000 Monterey Road, Morgan Hill


Wednesday, February 17; 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Gilroy Library, Community Room
350 W. 6th Street, Gilroy


Thursday, February 18; 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Morgan Hill Unified School District Office, Board Room
15600 Concord Circle, Morgan Hill


PG&E is committed to siting and designing the project in a manner that is most compatible with the surrounding communities and environment. The new substation will connect to the existing Morgan Hill-Llagas 115 kV line and one of the Metcalf-Moss Landing 230 kV lines. The proposed project will also include upgrades to a portion of the existing 115 kV transmission line that will connect the new substation to the existing Morgan Hill Substation.


The substation study area and potential transmission line corridors were selected based on the proximity to existing transmission lines and prioritized based on a set of criteria, including compatibilities with established land uses and infrastructure, effects on agricultural operations and impacts to nearby communities, among several other considerations.


Southern Santa Clara County has experienced rapid growth that has driven the need for new investments in the electric system. South County Power Connect will strengthen the power grid by increasing the electric system's capacity, which helps provide the flexibility needed to adapt to energy demands and protect against outages. The project will ensure the electric system can accommodate the region’s planned growth and is part of PG&E's commitment to providing an efficient, safe and reliable grid for the 16 million people PG&E serves in California.


PG&E will continue to engage with the community throughout the development of the project. These open houses represent the second phase of PG&E's three-part outreach program. PG&E will use the feedback gathered during this process to design a project with the least overall impact. Based on the current timeline, it is anticipated that the project will be submitted to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) in June 2017. The CPUC, the state agency with jurisdiction over transmission projects of this type, will conduct additional environmental review and provide opportunities for continued public comment. The CPUC has final approval over the project, including the location of the substation. It is anticipated the CPUC will issue its decision in early 2019.


The upcoming open houses are the first steps in a thorough and comprehensive environmental review and public outreach process. PG&E will conduct its own environmental assessment and gather feedback from the community to help shape the location, design and alignment of the project. Following these initial steps, the project will be submitted to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), where additional environmental review and public comment will be undertaken. CPUC has sole jurisdiction on the project's approval, including siting and routing, and based on the current project timeline, a final decision is expected in early 2019. Project construction will start after CPUC approval.


About PG&E


Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric utilities in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 20,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to nearly 15 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit www.pge.com and www.pge.com/en/about/newsroom/index.page.


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