A new 500-kV electric transmission line, the Trans Allegheny Interstate Line (TrAIL), is now in service and is improving reliability of the grid by enabling more power to be delivered to high congestion areas such as Washington, D.C., northern Virginia and Baltimore, Maryland.

The 220-mile (322-km) TrAIL line was built by and is jointly owned by Allegheny Energy (now FirstEnergy) and Dominion. This project is the first high-voltage backbone transmission line approved by the PJM Interconnection board through the PJM planning process to go into service. PJM called for the line in 2006 when planning studies showed potential reliability violations were likely to develop.

“The development of the line — from concept to completion — occurring as expeditiously as it did, is a testament to how well the transmission owners, state commissions and others worked together to solve power-reliability problems identified in our planning process,” said Michael Kormos, PJM senior vice president, operations. “The state commissions of Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Virginia should be commended for conducting their reviews and siting hearings in a timely way so that the line could be in place before violations would occur this summer.”

The TrAIL line was built in three segments, connecting substations in southwestern Pennsylvania, northern West Virginia and northern Virginia.

For more information, visit www.pjm.com.