Substation plans move forward

Published 8:00 am Thursday, April 25, 2024

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By Nate Pentecost 

The K-V Dispatch 

Plans for a Dominion substation near Dusty Lane in Kenbridge are moving forward. The question is what does that mean for the area? Residents have asked how that will help or affect them. 

The answer, Dominion officials say, is that it will improve reliability. But before we get into that, let’s explain the project we’re talking about. During that April 4 meeting, planning commission members determined the plans for the “Unity” substation comply with the Lunenburg-Kenbridge-Victoria Comprehensive Plan. The plans for the substation were then unanimously approved as part of the process required by the Code of Virginia prior to any request for a zoning amendment regarding projects considered. 

The substation is to be constructed as part of the larger “South Hill Electric Line” project, designed to keep up with economic development and increased demand across the region. The full South Hill concept involves two new electric transmission lines running through this area down to the South Hill and La Crosse sections a bit further south. 

So where exactly would the substation be placed? Unity is set to be located on a parcel southeast of 251 Dusty Lane, consisting of approximately 213 acres of land. A total of 49 acres of this land has been subdivided for purchase and use by Virginia Electric and Power Company (part of Dominion Energy). 

“The Unity Substation is being built to bolster reliability and address growing energy needs in the region. The Dusty Lane location was chosen due to the proximity of existing electric transmission infrastructure,” said Craig Howell, Dominion Energy Spokesperson. “Dominion Energy Electric Transmission is not involved in the economic development planning for the area. We support economic development efforts through our requirement to serve customers as the incumbent electric utility.” 

Public notice for the project was originally provided in April 2022. The State Corporation Commission gave approval to move forward with the substation back in June of 2023, but Dominion still had to put together plans and make their way to the Lunenburg County Planning Commission, to get sign off. 


So when will this project be completed? It’s going to take a while. According to Dominion’s website, construction was originally scheduled for early 2024. Construction is tentatively targeted for completion by the summer of 2025.