The Franklin County Line Upgrade is a VELCO proposed project to rebuild the power line from VELCO's Georgia Substation to our Highgate Substation. It includes replacing deteriorating two-pole wood structures with more resilient single-pole steel structures, although some two-pole structures will be required in certain locations. As part of this project, VELCO will also replace the current wire, known in our industry as conductor. The rebuilt line will be in the same general location as today but slightly shifted, however, 10-15 feet toward the eastern side of the corridor with a 30-feet increase in height. Once the new structures are installed and the conductor is energized, the old structures will be removed.

As the planner, builder, operator and manager of Vermont’s high-voltage electric transmission system, it is VELCO’s responsibility to ensure grid safety, reliability, and efficiency.  A routine inspection of this Highgate-to-Georgia line revealed that 146 of its 212 wooden transmission structures are in need of replacement in order to maintain safe and reliable grid operations. This isn’t surprising as 60 percent of the structures in question have been in place since 1958. Should we earn the necessary approvals to successfully complete this project, Vermont’s transmission grid will be more resilient, efficient and accommodating of additional in-state renewable energy.

This webpage is one way we work to keep neighbors, local officials and other stakeholders appropriately informed about this project. Timely sharing of information with Vermonters on our projects is a fundamental requirement of all VELCO projects. Please visit the Project Updates section to review the project updates, project correspondence, and public meeting information. We also welcome your feedback and ideas as to how we can improve how we share information.
 

Project Features
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Asset Maintenance
Asset Maintenance

Upgrades to existing electric transmission infrastructure.

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decarbonization
Decarbonization

Projects in support of decarbonization of our communities.

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Reliability
Reliability

Transmission additions or upgrades, necessary to ensure the system’s continued reliability. 

Timeline

  1. June - September 2022

    VELCO field crews begin field assessments to review existing conditions, perform construction site reviews, and identify trees that post a risk to the new line.

  2. November 2022

    VELCO project team hosted initial community meetings to provide a forum to learn all aspects of interest about the project. 

  3. December 2023

    VELCO expects to submit an application for regulatory approval.  

  4. 2024

    The anticipated start date for the FC Line Upgrade is in 2024. 

  5. 2026

    The anticipated completion date for the FC Line Upgrade is in 2026. 

Resources & Documents
Regulatory Permitting Documents
Project Maps

To help the public visualize the proposed project, VELCO has prepared an interactive map, which is best viewed on a laptop or desktop computer. Choose between a guided tour or a 3D visualization that illustrates the existing and proposed conditions for the Franklin County Line Upgrade Project. 

Franklin County Line Upgrade Guided Tour

Franklin County Line Upgrade 3D Model