Grid Operator OKs PSE&G’s $275M Substation Upgrade

Tom Johnson | July 27, 2017 | Energy & Environment
Plan calls for utility to build new facility adjacent to 60-year-old Newark Switch substation

A PSEG Power substation in Sewaren
Public Service Electric & Gas won approval yesterday from the regional grid operator to replace a large, outdated substation in Newark, a project that is estimated to cost $275 million.

The Newark Switch substation is one of the critical parts of the utility’s infrastructure in the state’s largest city, supplying power to NJ Transit, NJIT, City Hall, and Prudential, among other facilities and businesses.

The PSE&G project was among more than $417 million in electric transmission reliability projects approved by the PJM board of managers. One of the projects included a nearly $1 million upgrade of equipment on three transmission lines.

In Newark, PSE&G will build a new substation adjacent to the existing 60-year-old facility. It was considered the most cost-effective solution instead of relocating station.

“It’s a complex project,’’ said Kim Hanemann, senior vice president of delivery and construction for PSE&G. “It feeds a tremendous amount of load.’’

While there is still some engineering design work to be completed, the utility is expected to start work on the project immediately. It hopes to have the station in service by June 2021.

The project is the latest big-ticket project the utility is undertaking involving its transmission system. Between now and 2020, PSE&G plans to invest nearly $12 billion in various capital initiatives, most of that on its transmission and distribution systems.