Construction to begin this fall; Project is expected to create more than 1,000 local jobs
MANCHESTER, N.H. (October 5, 2016) – New Hampshire regulators have given final approval to the Merrimack Valley Reliability Project, which Eversource and National Grid expect to begin constructing this fall. The New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee (SEC) issued its Certificate of Approval for the new overhead 345 kV transmission line to be built in an existing right-of-way between Londonderry, New Hampshire and Tewksbury, Massachusetts.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities approved the Massachusetts portion of the project in April 2016.
“The Merrimack Valley Reliability Project answers an urgent need to strengthen the area’s electric system and ensure the continued reliable delivery of energy,” said Eversource Vice President of Electrical Operations Joe Purington. “This decision recognizes that our plan to maintain and operate our transmission system and meet the expectations of our customers is appropriate.”
“This project will strengthen the power grid that underpins the economic vitality and powers the quality of life in the region,” said Rudy Wynter, president of National Grid’s FERC Regulated Businesses. “A robust, reliable transmission system is critical to support job growth and enable our 21st century economy.”
The MVRP will run along existing utility rights-of-way, with approximately 18 miles through Londonderry, Hudson, Windham, and Pelham in New Hampshire and approximately 6.5 miles through Dracut, Andover, and Tewksbury in Massachusetts, for a total length of approximately 24.5 miles.
National Grid and Eversource will jointly invest a total of nearly $129 million* in New Hampshire and Massachusetts to bolster the regional infrastructure. The utilities estimate that during peak construction the project will create more than 1,000 local jobs in both states.
In July, the Site Evaluation Committee verbally approved the project and said it would later issue a Certificate of Site and Facility, which happened Tuesday, October 4. The decision followed rounds of public information sessions and public hearings in the New Hampshire counties through which the new line will pass.
Keeping open the lines of communication with local communities will continue to be a hallmark of the project. The project team will hold community meetings to inform residents, property and business owners and other interested parties about work activities and schedules. Project representatives from Eversource and National Grid will continue to communicate directly with local officials and project neighbors along the right-of-way throughout the construction and restoration process and will post regular updates on the project web page.
For more information about the Merrimack Valley Reliability Project, visit MA-NHsolution.com, call 1-844-646-8427 or send an email with questions to Info@MA-NHSolution.com.
*An earlier version of this news release included an inaccurate number.
Eversource (NYSE: ES) is New Hampshire's largest electric utility, serving more than 500,000 homes and businesses in 211 cities and towns. Recognized in 2015 as the top-ranked “green” utility in the U.S. by Newsweek magazine, Eversource harnesses the commitment of its approximately 8,000 employees across three states to build a single, united company around the mission of delivering reliable energy and superior customer service. For more information, please visit our website (www.eversource.com) and follow us on Twitter (@eversourceNH) and Facebook (facebook.com/EversourceNH). Eversource remains committed to hiring New Hampshire workers first for its New Hampshire projects, as part of its NH Energy Jobs Partnership.
About National Grid
National Grid (LSE: NG; NYSE: NGG) is an electricity and natural gas delivery company that connects nearly 7 million customers to vital energy sources through its networks in New York, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. It is the largest distributor of natural gas in the Northeast. National Grid also operates the systems that deliver gas and electricity across Great Britain.
Through its U.S. Connect21 strategy, National Grid is transforming its electricity and natural gas networks to support the 21st century digital economy with smarter, cleaner, and more resilient energy solutions. Connect21 is vital to our communities' long-term economic and environmental health and aligns with regulatory initiatives in New York (REV: Reforming the Energy Vision) and Massachusetts (Grid Modernization).
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For National Grid