March 17, 2021 – Appalachian Power plans to upgrade the electric transmission system serving customers in Henry County, company representatives said today. The Fieldale – Ridgeway Transmission Line Rebuild Project involves upgrading approximately 15 miles of transmission line. The project replaces deteriorating 1940s wooden poles with steel poles. The upgrades replace equipment that resulted in multiple service interruptions for customers south of Fieldale down to the Virginia-North Carolina border, and east of Ridgeway toward Sandy Level.
“The outages have largely affected customers served by the Sheffield and Ridgeway substations in Henry County,” said George Porter, Appalachian Power spokesperson. “We expect these upgrades to strengthen the electric system and reduce the likelihood of power outages.”
Company officials plan to rebuild the power line in or near the existing right-of-way. The transmission line begins at the Fieldale Substation along Appalachian Drive and exits the substation to the east. The line travels south, crosses Route 220 at two separate locations and travels through Sheffield Substation off Joseph Martin Highway. The upgrades continue through Ridgeway Substation on Old Mill Road and conclude at a structure near the Virginia-North Carolina border.
Company representatives invite landowners to a virtual open house at AppalachianPower.com/Fieldale-Ridgeway to learn more about the project and provide feedback to the project team. Hosting the open house online complies with the social distancing recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Landowners in the project area can expect to receive a packet in the mail that includes additional project details and a comment card they can return by mail with their feedback.
“Gathering input from the community plays a vital role in finalizing plans to rebuild the transmission line,” said Porter. “The virtual open house allows us to gather input from the community, while keeping our employees and customers safe.”
Company representatives plan to file an application this fall with the Virginia State Corporation Commission seeking approval for the project. If the project receives approval, company representatives expect construction to start in fall 2023 and conclude the summer of 2025.