On Wednesday, the Tallahassee City Commission voted 4-0 to approve a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Gulf Power for the North Florida Resiliency Connection project. Once negotiations are complete, the co-location agreement will be presented to the City Commission for final approval.
According to Gulf Power, the proposed North Florida Resiliency Connection will enhance the reliability and resiliency of electric service in good weather and bad for customers.
The transmission line project will cover approximately176 miles across seven counties and create 200 jobs during construction.
The controversial project originally called for the transmission lines to run along Tram Road in eastern Leon County. However, homeowners objected and county and city commissioners also voiced concerns over the plan.
A new proposal calls for a revised route that will be south of Tram Road. However, this does not mean that the Tram Road route is off the table.
Select details are:
- A revised route that is south of Tram Road;
- The City of Tallahassee must approve any route within Leon County;
- Replacement of approximately 150 City utility poles to withstand wind speeds of 130 mph;
- A transmission grid interconnection (at the City’s option) with voltage transformation from 161 kV to 230 kV;
- Construction that preserves future circuit expandability for the City; and,
- Adequate facility and line spacing for operational, maintenance and repair safety for both utilities.
The City staff reports that the co-location of transmission facilities will result in the least environmental impact and clearing of trees. The upgrades to City facilities are estimated to be worth approximately $30 million.