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Mid Cape Reliability Project Change

EFSB 19-06A/D.P.U. 19-142A/19-143A/23-22: Eversource Energy is proposing to modify electric infrastructure located in Bourne, Sandwich, and Barnstable, Massachusetts. The following project changes would enable the operation of a previously approved transmission line between Bourne and Barnstable at 345 kilovolts (“kV”) (also known as the Mid Cape Reliability Project). The proposed Project includes (a) operating and interconnecting the line between Bourne and Barnstable at 345 kV; (b) expanding the West Barnstable Substation for 345 kV operation; and (c) constructing a new 345 kV switching station in Bourne.

Table of Contents

Evidentiary Hearing - May 13 & 15, 2024

The Siting Board held evidentiary hearings on May 13 & 15, 2024 in the above-referenced matter.

Hearings were held via Zoom and held from 10:00 AM and concluded no later than 5:00 PM.

Video recordings of the hearings can be accessed at the DPU YouTube channel:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCklPj6xxSKww-Kr26lEZVTA

Topic: EFSB 19-06A/DPU 19-142A/143A/23-22 Mid-Cape Reliability Project Change and West Barnstable Substation Zoning Exemption

Procedural Conference - February 26, 2024

9:30 AM - 10:30 AM

Topic: EFSB 19-06A/ D.P.U. 19-142A/19-143A/23-22 - Mid-Cape Reliability Project NOPC & Zoning Exemption

Please click the link below to join the webinar:

https://us06web.zoom.us/j/81463913022

Webinar ID: 814 6391 3022

    International numbers are available at https://us06web.zoom.us/u/kd78u8d7f8

Hybrid Public Comment Hearing – November 14, 2023

The Siting Board conducted a public comment hearing (a meeting where the public may provide input on the Projects) in hybrid format, allowing participation in person or remotely on: Tuesday, November 14, 2023, beginning at 6:30 PM.

In-person hearing location: Tilden Arts Center, Cape Cod Community College, 2240 Iyannough Road, West Barnstable, MA 02668.  

Recordings of Hearings

The transcripts of the public comment hearing has been posted to the DPU Fileroom.  For your convenience, the following link leads directly to the transcript in the Fileroom:  https://fileservice.eea.comacloud.net/FileService.Api/file/FileRoom/18276235

Written Comments

The Siting Board also accepted written comments on the Project.  Written comments will be most useful to the Siting Board if submitted by November 28, 2023

Participation in Proceedings

Persons or groups who wish to be involved in the Siting Board proceeding (beyond providing comments at the public comment hearing or in writing) may seek to intervene as a party or participate as a limited participant.  A petition to intervene or participate must also be filed no later than November 28, 2023, and follow the instructions provided below.

Persons or groups who wish to be involved in the Siting Board proceeding, beyond providing comments at the public comment hearing or submitting written comments, may seek either to intervene as a party or to participate as a limited participant. 

“Intervenor" or “Party” Status:  An intervenor can participate fully in the evidentiary phase of the proceeding, including the right to participate in evidentiary hearings, file a brief and present comments to the Siting Board on the Tentative Decision, and to appeal a Final Decision.

“Limited Participant” Status:  A limited participant receives documents during the proceeding and may file a brief and present comments regarding the Tentative Decision to the Siting Board.

A petition to intervene must demonstrate that the petitioner may be substantially and specifically affected by this proceeding.  For more information on the Siting Board’s procedural rules, please see the following link: https://www.mass.gov/doc/980-cmr-105/download.

Important Dates

Public Comment Hearing

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Close of Public Comment Period

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Deadline to file for intervention/limited participant status

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Project Information

Decision on Project Proposal

The public comment hearing marks the beginning of an official, state-level decision-making process focused on whether the Project should be approved.  The Siting Board will make the decision based on the following law:

  1. Under G.L. (Massachusetts General Law) c.(chapter) 164, § (section) 69J, the Siting Board will review the Company’s proposed Project to determine whether the Project will provide a reliable energy supply with a minimum impact on the environment at the lowest possible cost.
  2. Under G.L. c. 164, § 72, the Siting Board will determine whether the proposed Project is necessary, serves the public convenience, and is consistent with the public interest.
  3. Under G.L. c. 40A, § 3, the Siting Board will determine whether certain zoning exemptions in Barnstable are required for the Project, and whether the present or proposed use of the land or structures is reasonably necessary for the convenience or welfare of the public.

Description of Project

The Mid Cape Reliability Project is an Eversource project approved by the Siting Board on December 16, 2022.  Eversource has proposed Project modifications to accommodate interconnection of Park City Wind LCC’s approximately 800-megawatt offshore wind energy generation facility to the regional grid.

Transmission Line Changes:  The Board’s December 2022 approval allowed for construction of a new, approximately 12.5-mile, overhead electric transmission line (the “New Line”) capable of operating at 345 kV along existing, occupied Company right-of-way (“ROW”) 342 that runs between the Bourne Switching Station in Bourne and the West Barnstable Substation in Barnstable through Bourne, Sandwich and Bourne.  The initial 4.8 miles of ROW 342 is located on Joint Base Cape Cod (“JBCC”) property.  East of JBCC, this route crosses the following roads in the Town of Sandwich: Forestdale Road, Kiah Way, Quaker Meeting House Road, Mill Road, and Great Hill Road.  It then crosses the following roads in the Town of Barnstable: Crocker Road, Service Road, Prospect Street, Route 6, Pine Street, Plum Street, and Oak Street; the route terminates at the West Barnstable Substation.  To interconnect Park City Wind LCC’s facility to the grid, Eversource’s proposed Project modifications will enable the New Line to operate at 345 kV.  To create space within the ROW, an existing overhead distribution line will be relocated toward the center of the ROW.  With the exception of two new riser structures located on the existing ROW and changes to the West Barnstable Substation parcel, there are no physical additions or modifications required on the New Line or the existing ROW to operate the New Line at 345 kV.

New Switching Station in Bourne:  Eversource proposes to construct a new 345 kV Switching Station (“new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station”) on the site of the existing Original 115 kV Station, next to the recently constructed Replacement 115 kV Station.  The Original 115 kV Station will be demolished.  The new 345-kV Bourne Switching Station will occupy a footprint of approximately 0.73 acres, of which approximately 0.6 acres include the footprint of the Original 115 kV Station that will be demolished.  The new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station would include facilities for connection of five 345 kV lines, and three bays (five-line positions and eight 345 kV breakers) with bus and connections.  Further, the Company would connect two existing overhead lines – Line 322 and Line 399 – into the new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station via an underground connection due to the number of overhead lines traversing the area.  To achieve this transition, the Company would construct five structures on the ROW and install duct banks to the new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station.  Wires and cables will connect into the 115 kV and new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station from the adjacent ROWs including an approximately 0.24 acre cable riser station located east of the Switching Stations. The new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station would be constructed on Joint Base Cape Cod.  The nearest residential neighborhood is located approximately 700 feet to the northeast of the new 345 kV Bourne Switching Station in the Hobbler Road neighborhood of Bourne.  The site is also bordered to the west by Sandwich Road.

Expanded West Barnstable Substation: Eversource also proposes modifications to the existing West Barnstable Substation, located at 661 Oak Street in Barnstable, including: installation of new gas insulated switchgear; fully integrated/prefabricated control enclosure to house station batteries, relay protection, and control equipment; new 345 kV-to-115 kV autotransformer; new duct bank and underground line cable tie connections between both the existing and new autotransformer and new GIS; two shielding masts; and new 345-kV transmission line facilities.  The West Barnstable Substation will be expanded to the northeast of existing substation facilities to accommodate the Project’s 345 kV facilities.  The fence line of the West Barnstable Substation will be expanded by approximately 0.96 acres to accommodate the Project. The Company also proposes to expand the existing fence line by approximately 170 feet to the north and 130 feet to the east, and to make landscaping alterations.  In addition, the western fence line will moved by approximately sixty-five feet to accommodate a new switchyard bay, a change approved by the Siting Board in December 2022 but not yet constructed.

Initial Filings

All documents related filed in relation to a proceeding are posted to the DPU File room.  The File room page for a proceeding represents the official record for that proceeding.  The public can access the File room page for this proceeding at the following link:

Public Review of the Company’s Petition

Hard copies of the Company’s petitions, including all attachments, are available for public inspection at the following locations:

Boston

  • Energy Facilities Siting Board, One South Station, 3rd floor, Boston, MA 02110

Barnstable

  • Sturgis Library, 3090 Main Street, Barnstable, MA 02630
  • Hyannis Public Library, 401 Main Street, Hyannis, MA 02601
  • Town Clerk, Town of Barnstable, 367 Main Street, Hyannis, MA 02601
  • Whelden Memorial Library, 2401 Meetinghouse Way, West Barnstable, MA 02668

Bourne

  • Bourne Town Hall, 24 Perry Avenue, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532    
  • Jonathan Bourne Public Library, 19 Sandwich Road, Bourne, MA 02532

Sandwich

  • Sandwich Public Library, 142 Main Street, Sandwich, MA 02563
  • Sandwich Town Offices, 100 Route 6A, Sandwich, MA 02563

Visual References

Exhibit A, below, shows the route for the Mid Cape Reliability Project’s overhead transmission line (in purple) and the new Bourne Switching Station and existing West Barnstable Substation (adjacent to another substation) on either end.  A larger version of this figure is available at the following link: https://www.eversource.com/content/residential/about/transmission-distribution/projects/massachusetts-projects/mid-cape-reliability-project

Mid-Cape Proj Change Map 1

Exhibit B, below, shows an aerial view of the current Bourne Switching Station and the area where the new 345-kV Bourne Switching Station would be built.  Associated changes are also depicted.  All of these items are located on Joint Base Cape Cod.  A larger version of this figure is available at the following link: https://www.mass.gov/media/2669321/download

Mid-Cape Proj Change Map 2

Exhibit C, below, shows an aerial view of the West Barnstable Substation, just to the north of Route 6 and to the south of an adjacent substation.  It also shows surrounding residences.  The Company is requesting zoning relief for the construction and operation for the expansion of the West Barnstable Substation.  A larger version of this figure is available at the following link: https://fileservice.eea.comacloud.net/FileService.Api/file/FileRoom/17110447.

Mid-Cape Proj Change Map 3

For further information about intervention or participation in the proceeding, please contact the Presiding Officer at the address or telephone number below:

Donna Sharkey, Presiding Officer
Energy Facilities Siting Board
One South Station
Boston, MA 02110
Donna.Sharkey@mass.gov
(617) 305-3625

Accommodation Request

Reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities (e.g., Braille, large print, electronic files, audio format) are available upon request.  Include a complete description of the accommodation you will need and a way we can contact you if we need more information.  Please provide as much advance notice as possible.  Last minute requests will be accepted, but we may be unable to fulfill the request.  Please send your requests to: Gabriella Knight, ADA and Diversity Manager at the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, at gabriella.knight@mass.gov.

Language interpretation services are available upon request.  Include in your request the language required and a way to contact you if we need more information.  Requests may be made no later than November 7, 2023.  It may not be possible to accommodate last-minute requests.  Contact the Presiding Officer to make a request (contact information below).

Useful Information

Contact   for Mid Cape Reliability Project Change

Fax

(617) 443-1116

Address

Department of Public Utilities
1 South Station, 3rd floor, Boston, MA 02110

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