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OVERVIEW

In the fall of 2005, a public/private partnership consisting of Wyoming Infrastructure Authority (WIA), Trans-Elect Development Company (Trans-Elect), and Western Area Power Administration (Western) was formed to consider the expansion of transmission capacity across the TOT 3 interface located along the Wyoming-Colorado border (the "Wyoming-Colorado Intertie Project” [WCI]) - a project that was recommended for development by a consensus of regional stakeholders in the Rocky Mountain Area Transmission Study (RMATS). On behalf of the partnership, in November of 2005, Western posted a solicitation of interest in the Federal Register to gain a measure of interest in the project. On the basis of the robust response to the Western posting the parties were sufficiently encouraged to proceed with studies that would culminate in an "Open Season" process for transmission capacity that would be held in 2008.

A series of technical and cost studies have been commissioned and completed with independent consultants (PTI/Siemens and Burns & McDonnell) to design the system, determine costs, identify potential corridors and configurations, develop project schedules, and ascertain permitting requirements. Simultaneously, the project partners have held a number of public and individual meetings with generation developers and utilities to assess the marketplace to determine the project's economic feasibility. Our project feasibility assessments have taken advantage of input from stakeholders to gage support for the project, as well as other studies that have been or are being conducted within the TOT 3 area, including the Colorado Long-Range Transmission Plan developed under the auspices of the Colorado Coordinated Planning Group (CCPG) and the Wyoming Joint Queue Study.

Our activities have confirmed the presence of over 25 wind generation projects under development along the path of the WCI Project. The development of the WCI Project would provide access to Wyoming's world class energy resources to the benefit of electricity customers along the Colorado Front Range in the form of competitively-priced, clean and dependable power to supplement electric generation from in-state sources. As such, we anticipate that public support will continue to be strong for the project.

On the basis of present study results and our assessment of the marketplace, we have concluded that the project is feasible and therefore, definitive information is being compiled upon which to base an Open Season. This process, which was initiated in the summer of 2007, is scheduled to culminate in the summer of 2008. This process involves defining the cost and business structure for a non-discriminatory competitive auction of transmission capacity. This process will involve public and private meetings with potential bidders to gain input on the design of the Open Season and the establishment and public posting of bidding procedures and evaluation criteria. The results of the Open Season will determine the timing and sequence of activities that will be undertaken for bringing the project on-line. The Project has an expected in-service date in 2013.

      © 2007 - Wyoming-Colorado Intertie Transmission Project