Appalachian Power Announces $337 Million Upgrade to Electric Grid in West Virginia

Upcoming power plant retirements in the Kanawha and Ohio valleys as early as 2015 will change the way electric power flows on the electric transmission grid. To accommodate those changes and address additional issues identified by an independent regional transmission operator, an Appalachian Power affiliate will file requests this year with regulators to make more than $337 million in upgrades in West Virginia, with most of the work slated for the Kanawha Valley.

“The power grid is dynamic and it will be affected by retirement of existing power plants,” said Charles Patton, Appalachian Power president and chief operating officer. “These upgrades not only meet the immediate need to strengthen the grid, but position the region well for growth in the future.”

The upgrades include rebuilding approximately 52 miles of existing transmission lines and making upgrades to substations. The bulk of the Kanawha Valley work will take place between the company’s John Amos Plant and its Turner and Cabin Creek substations, with a key loop in the Cross Lanes area and another in the Kanawha City area.  Additional work will be done to facilities that feed off the backbone transmission line that runs from Poca to Cabin Creek. The last major reinforcement to this backbone was nearly 40 years ago.

The rebuild will involve removing current transmission facilities and replacing them with similar but sturdier facilities of the same voltage. Approximately 80 percent of the transmission line rebuild is expected to be done within or adjacent to existing rights of way.  In most cases the existing 138 kilovolt (kV) facilities that were built in the 1920s-1940s will be replaced with 138 kV lines and somewhat taller and of heavier structures that can carry more current. Routing and construction details will be determined after additional field work is done.

The company will host two informational workshops in the project area, July 8 at Poca High School, Rt. 62, Poca, and July 9 at Kanawha City Elementary, 3601 Staunton Avenue, Kanawha City. The workshops will be from 5-8 p.m.

Once the field work is complete the Appalachian Power affiliate, AEP West Virginia Transmission Company, Inc., will file requests with the Public Service Commission of West Virginia seeking approval to perform the work. Construction is expected to begin this fall and the work is expected to be complete in 2017.         

The electric distribution system in the Charleston area is largely served by five 138 kV transmission substations. At these substations the electricity is stepped down in voltage for consumers. Most residential and commercial consumers take power at 120/240 volts.          

Customers can find more information about the Kanawha Valley Area Transmission Reinforcement Project at www.AppalachianPower.com/KanawhaValley.

Appalachian Power has about 1 million customers in Virginia, West Virginia and Tennessee (as AEP Appalachian Power). It is a unit of American Electric Power, one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, which delivers electricity to more than 5 million customers in 11 states. AEP ranks among the nation’s largest generators of electricity, owning nearly 38,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the U.S. AEP also owns the nation’s largest electricity transmission system, a nearly 39,000-mile network that includes more 765 kilovolt extra-high voltage transmission lines than all other U.S. transmission systems combined.

AEP West Virginia Transmission Company, Inc., an affiliate of Appalachian Power Company, is one of seven public utility companies that are wholly owned subsidiaries of AEP Transmission Company. AEP Appalachian Transmission Company was formed as a transmission-only company to finance, develop, construct, own and operate new transmission assets in APCO's West Virginia service territory that are physically connected to AEP's existing system.


More From APCO

Take Charge

Save Money & Energy - Now & Later

Sign Up Now Pay Online for Free with Paperless Billing

Pay Online for Free with Paperless Billing

Learn more

Download our app

How We Restore Power Learn more

How We Restore Power

Visit AEP.com
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of the AEP Terms and Conditions. View our Privacy Policy. © 1996-2019 American Electric Power. All Rights Reserved.

Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy for Appalachian Power, a unit of American Electric Power (AEP)


This Privacy Policy applies only to AppalachianPower.com and the Appalachian Power customer mobile app (com.aep.customerapp.apco). Other AEP websites and apps may be governed by their own privacy policies, appropriate to the uses and needs of each. Throughout the site or app, we may provide links to resources and sites that are not part of AppalachianPower.com or the Appalachian Power customer mobile app. This Privacy Policy does not apply to those resources and sites.


By using this site or app, you consent to the terms of this Privacy Policy. Whenever you submit information via this site or app, you agree to the collection, use, and disclosure of that information in accordance with this Privacy Policy.

Information Collected

  1. Passively collected information

    During your use of this site or app, we may collect anonymous information about your visit here through the use of server logs, cookies, scripts, tracking pixels and other Web traffic tracking systems. This information is aggregated and used to improve user experience through analysis of user activities. This information is never combined with any of the personally identifiable information you may provide in your use of the features of this site or app.
  2. Personally identifiable information

    On certain forms of this site or app, you may be asked to provide information about yourself or your account with us, either to identify yourself to us or to request a service from us. In each case, we will inform you what information is provided at your option and what information is required to complete the transaction or activity you are engaged in. If you are unwilling to provide this required information, you will be unable to complete the requested transaction.

Use and disclosure of information

The information you provide to us will be used to respond to requests you may make for services. Some or all of this information may be added to your permanent account record and may be used for research purposes.

In addition, we may use elements of this information in the following situations:

  1. We may transfer the information to Appalachian Power’s affiliates and subsidiaries, unless such transfer is prohibited by law;
  2. We may transfer the information as part of a merger, consolidation, acquisition, divestiture or other corporate restructuring (including bankruptcy);
  3. We may make the information available to third parties who are providing the product, service or information that you have requested (but not your password);
  4. We may make such information available to third parties who are providing services to Appalachian Power (for example, providing the information to third parties performing computer-related services for Appalachian Power);
  5. We may use the information to communicate with you about products and services that may be of interest to you.
  6. We may disclose the information if we form a good-faith belief that disclosure of such information is necessary to investigate, prevent, or take action regarding any illegal activities or regarding interference with the operation of our site or violation of its terms of use; or
  7. We may disclose the information if we believe that disclosure is required by law or regulation or in response to a subpoena or other order of a court or other governmental agency.

Appalachian Power uses Flurry Analytics Service (provided by Yahoo) in order to improve its mobile apps. Flurry’s privacy policy governs the use of this information.

Also, Appalachian Power reserves the right to share any aggregated information (i.e., non-personally identifiable information) with any third parties for any reason, unless prohibited by law.

We will not sell, rent or otherwise disclose the information we gather about you or your account to any third party, except as outlined in this Privacy Policy.


Appalachian Power takes reasonable steps to protect your personally identifiable information as it is transferred to us, through the use of Web technologies such as the Secure Sockets Layer and others. However, no Internet transmission of information is ever completely secure or error-free. In particular, e-mail sent to or from Appalachian Power may not be secure.

How to Reach Us

If you would like to update your personally identifiable information or if you have questions about this privacy policy, please contact us.

Changes to This Policy

Appalachian Power reserves the right to change this Privacy Policy at any time. If this Privacy Policy changes, the revised policy will be posted to this site. Please review this Privacy Policy before you provide any personally identifiable information through this site. Use of our web site after the posting of a revised privacy policy constitutes your consent to the revised policy.

This policy was last revised on December 13, 2017.

Close ×

Sign Up For Alerts

Subscribing to APCO alerts gives you instant notification for:

  • Billing & Payments - avoid late payments and disconnection
  • Outage Updates - find out if there's an outage at your address and when power will be back on

Win an Xbox One with Alerts!

Enroll in alerts to be eligible to win. Subscribing to I&M alerts gives you instant notification for:

  • Billing & Payments - avoid late payments and disconnection
  • Outage Updates - find out if there's an outage at your address and when power will be back on

Loading video...