Xcel Energy is currently spending more than $30 million to upgrade the Greeley distribution and transmission system. We are committed to providing safe, reliable service to the city of Greeley and its customers. We are continually upgrading the electrical system infrastructure to support continued economic development and job growth. Upgrades at the Weld and Rosedale substations in Greeley, including the addition of another transmission source into Rosedale substation, will provide the foundation for an estimated $12.8 million expansion at the Greeley substation at 10th street and 23rd avenue.
The Greeley expansion will support growth and expand capacity in the Greeley area. The comprehensive transmission plan is designed to upgrade the majority of the current 44 kilovolt (kV) transmission system to a 115 kV system and remove from service several existing substations. The more robust 115 kV system will help address long-term reliability and growth in the Greeley area.
The upgrades to Greeley Substation create the system flexibility needed to support the overall Greeley area distribution and transmission upgrades. Moving from a single bus layout to a breaker and a half bus layout allows power to flow over more paths within a substation. Without these additional paths it would be impossible to construct the proposed Greeley area upgrades without lengthy power outages to customers in the city. The current layout of the Greeley Substation also puts the city and surrounding areas at risk of significant outages. The frequency of outages, duration of outages, and the number of customers affected in the event of an outage will all be reduced as a result of the substation expansion. Construction started on the expansion project in late March 2016. The estimated cost of the Greeley Substation expansion is $12.8M. The target in-service date for the project is December 2017.
The first phase of the Weld Substation project included the installation of an autotransformer and associated equipment in order to provide additional load support and system stability/reliability to the Greeley/NE Colorado area. The transformer was energized, commissioned and carrying load on May 20, 2014. The second phase of the project included the expansion of the substation to a double breaker/double bus configuration to provide additional load support and system stability to the area. The Weld Substation was energized on May 19, 2016.
The Rosedale Substation project is complete and in-service as of 12/18/2015. The project cost was $10.1M. The project consisted of expanding Rosedale substation to a breaker and a half configuration as well as interconnecting Western Area Power Administration’s (WAPA) Weld – Kersey Tap 115 kV line. Interconnecting the WAPA line at Rosedale provided an additional 115 kV source from the Weld substation to the eastern side of Greeley. In addition, the Rosedale substation expansion increased the reliability to the area by converting the single bus layout to a breaker and a half configuration, which allows power to flow over multiple paths in a substation. This configuration results in reduced frequency, duration, and severity of outages to customers.
We are spending more than $8 million on extensive distribution system upgrades throughout Greeley to improve reliability and to create a more efficient and optimized system. The distribution upgrades also improve connectivity between the downtown area, the University of Northern Colorado campus, and the Northern Colorado Medical Center.
In 2016, crews worked to increase the reliability of the area by reconfiguring the underground distribution lines in and around downtown Greeley and surrounding areas (Zones A, B, C North, D, and F) by upgrading and installing new, above ground switch cabinets and pad mount transformers. For 2017, Xcel Energy is implementing similar action plans for Zones C South, E, and G. Xcel Energy expects to finish construction on the remaining zones by mid 2018.