February 25, 2005

Power line construction will cross freeways;
New lines will handle forecasted higher energy demand in the region

INLAND EMPIRE, Calif., Feb. 25, 2005—To meet the growing demand for electricity in the Inland Empire, Southern California Edison (SCE) plans to strengthen its electrical grid by replacing high-voltage transmission lines there with new, higher- capacity power lines. The lines will be strung across State Highway 60, Interstate 15 (I-15) and Interstate 10 (I-10) freeways. 

Neil Derry, SCE’s public affairs region manager, said the transmission- improvement projects will strengthen SCE’s transmission infrastructure so that it can carry heavier electrical loads.

“This transmission upgrade is part of SCE’s integrated company approach to meet electricity supply and delivery, and service reliability needs of our customers,” Derry said. “Over the next six years, SCE plans to invest an additional $11 billion to expand and upgrade its southern California transmission and distribution facilities.”

Over the next five years, SCE will invest approximately $2.7 billion to bolster its Inland Empire transmission infrastructure.

The Highway 60 freeway transmission construction project will occur between February 27 and March 20, while construction across the I-15 will occur between March 13 and April 10, and the I-10, between March 27 and April 17.  Two steel towers, one adjacent to Highway 60 (east of Milliken Avenue) and the other, adjacent to the I-10 freeway (east of Etiwanda Avenue) will also be replaced.

During construction, crews will install a safety net system across each of the three freeways. 

While much of the work will be done in the early morning hours (Sundays between midnight and 5 a.m.), when traffic flow is lighter, there will be some traffic delays. During the three safety net system installations and removals, the California Highway Patrol (CHP) will run traffic breaks that will last approximately 10-15 minutes. During the wire pulling-construction segments, all power lines will be de-energized. 

The following schedule provides dates and approximate times when freeway traffic will be affected.

Highway 60 Transmission Upgrade

  • February 27, between midnight and 5 a.m. – freeway-spanning net system will be installed just east of Milliken Avenue; CHP to run traffic break for approximately 15 minutes; prior to February 27, miscellaneous lane closures will occur to install equipment.
  • March 7 – March 12 – new, high-voltage wires will be strung above the freeway.
  • March 20, between midnight and 5 a.m. – freeway spanning nets will be removed under a 10-minute CHP traffic break and single lane closures. Wooden support poles remain for later removal. Single lane closures may be required to remove the poles.

I-15 Transmission Upgrade

  • March 13, between midnight and 5 a.m. – freeway-spanning net system will be installed southwest of Mission Boulevard, near the I-15/60 interchange; CHP to run traffic break for approximately 15 minutes; prior to March 13, miscellaneous lane closures will occur to install equipment.
  • March 16 – March 19 – new, high-voltage wires will be strung above freeway.
  • April 10, between midnight and 5 a.m. – freeway spanning nets will be removed under a 10-minute CHP traffic break and single lane closures. Wooden support poles remain for later removal. Single lane closures may be required to remove the poles.

I-10 Transmission Upgrade

  • March 27, between midnight and 5 a.m. – freeway-spanning net system will be installed, east of Etiwanda Avenue; CHP to run traffic break for approximately 15 minutes; prior to March 27, miscellaneous lane closures will occur to install equipment.
  • March 28 – April 9 – new, high-voltage wire will be strung above freeway.
  • April 17, between midnight and 5 a.m. – freeway spanning nets will be removed under a 10-minute CHP traffic break and single lane closures. Wooden support poles remain for later removal. Single lane closures may be required to remove the poles.

During the wire-pulling process, crews will be working directly above the freeways. SCE urges drivers to exercise caution and follow all posted speed restrictions as they pass under the construction work.

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An Edison International (NYSE:EIX) company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation’s largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 13 million via 4.6 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California.