Project durations of customer connections relies on a number of factors such as the time the customer takes to make decisions throughout the project, the volume of active projects, complexity of the project, stakeholder (public) impact (i.e. landowner consultations), availability of construction resources and procurement of long lead time items (e.g. transformers).
The AESO’s Connection Process Overview currently shows a typical timeline of 24 to 36 months to complete a connection project. Under the new Connection Process the customer has increased responsibilities to drive project timelines.
Below is a brief description of the AESO’s staged Connection Process:
- Stage 0: Identify Project
Stage 0 is the inaugural stage of the Connection Process. At this stage, the Customer identifies a request for a new connection project by submitting a System Access Service Request (SASR) to the AESO. The SASR is reviewed by the AESO for completeness and the project is initiated. An AESO Project Coordinator is assigned who will be the facilitator of the Connection Process and the AESO point of contact for the Transmission Facility Owner and Customer for the life cycle of the project.
- Stage 1: Connection Study Scope
Stage 1 represents the scoping stage of the project. At the beginning of this stage, a project Kick Off meeting takes place and discussions regarding the Connection Plan and Connection Study Scope commence. During this stage, an assessment will be made to determine AESO vs. TFO/Consultant involvement in connection studies and the Connection Proposal depending on the complexity of the connection and any system impacts. Customers are responsible for costs related to preparation of the Connection Proposal.
- Stage 2: Connection Proposal
Stage 2 is the stage where the connection studies are completed and the Connection Proposal is finalized. The cost for the connection is included in the Connection Proposal. At the end of this stage, the AESO accepts the Connection Proposal (or Customer accepts if AESO completes). The Customer must meet security requirements for Stage 3 costs related to the preparation of the NID and/or FA. The Customer is required to provide specific machine data for dynamic studies in order to complete Stage 2.
- Stage 3: NID & Facility Application
Stage 3 is the stage where the Need Identification Document and Facility Application (FA) are completed. The TFO completes the Proposal to Provide Service (PPS) and FA. The Customer must meet security requirements for Stage 4 costs incurred from time of filing to when TFO Permit & License is issued by the AUC. Generators must have filed their Generator Facility Application with the AUC before they can complete Stage 3.
- Stage 4: File Application & AUC Approval
Stage 4 is the stage where the NID and FA are filed with the AUC. The AUC timelines for processing and approving applications are outlined in AUC Bulletin 2009-025. To complete this stage, load customers must pay Customer Contribution and generators must pay Customer Contribution and Generator System Contribution in cash within 90 days of AUC issuing TFO Permit & Licence before construction can commence.
- Stage 5: Construction
In Stage 5 construction of transmission facilities required for the connection commences. The Customer and AESO are required to sign the corresponding System Access Service Agreement 6 weeks prior to energization. Data required to authorize energization of the facilities is required in order to complete Stage 5.
- Stage 6: Energization
Stage 6 marks the final stage of the Connection Process. An Energization Checklist/Deficiency List must be completed upon which energization of the transmission facilities can occur. For generators, a commissioning period applies following which a Commissioning Certificate is issued. The TFO provides the final project costs and a true-up occurs so that project close-out can take place.
For more information...
Please contact AltaLink's Customer Service team.