PLAINVIEW, Texas (PRESS RELEASE) — The following is a press release from Xcel Energy:
Xcel Energy has invested approximately $6 million to renovate its Plainview operations service center and office complex at 2301 Quincy St. to create a safer, more efficient and more comfortable work environment and establish a backup control center for the distribution network that serves the entire region.
“We’ve invested hundreds of millions of dollars in our generating and power delivery capacity in the Plainview-area over the past decade, but we’ve also been investing in the needs of our local employees who are vital to building and maintaining the grid,” said Chris LeFevre, Xcel Energy manager for Community and Economic Development in Plainview.
The Plainview Service Center was built in 1963 and has not been significantly altered over the past 59 years, LeFevre said. The building serves as home base for roughly 25 field personnel and associated staff who are responsible for building and maintaining the electric distribution network in the Plainview operations district. It also provides a base of operations for meter readers, fleet operations, community relations and design engineering personnel. The new backup control center would provide a base for monitoring the company’s Texas-New Mexico distribution network and dispatching field crews in the event the main control center in Lubbock is unable to function.
Work on the 23,600 square-foot facility included an update of electrical, mechanical and plumbing systems as well as a retrofitting of employee workspaces with new furnishings and energy-saving LED lighting for a more comfortable working environment. Efficiency upgrades are expected to reduce electricity consumption by as much as 50%. Xcel Energy also improved drainage at the facility, added new fencing and other security elements, enhanced the building’s information technology systems and installed a backup power generating system.
The Plainview Service Center is the hub of Xcel Energy operations for a large district that runs north to Kress and Tulia, northeast to Silverton, east to Floydada, southeast to Petersburg, south to Abernathy, southwest to Littlefield and Sudan, west to Earth and northwest to Hart.
Over the past decade, Xcel Energy has undertaken several large improvement projects across the Plainview district to improve the reliability and capacity of the power grid. Most notable is the construction of the Hale Wind Project in the southeast part of Hale County near Petersburg, a $700 million wind energy plant that has increased rural land values and is providing more than $1.9 million in annual royalty payments to landowners within the wind farm’s footprint. Additionally, Hale Wind is infusing the tax base with approximately $22 million in property tax payments over 25 years.
Xcel Energy has also built more than 50 miles of new high-voltage transmission lines and completed multiple substation upgrades in the area aimed at boosting the capacity of the grid to serve growing agricultural and industrial demand. In 2017, Xcel Energy updated the grid serving central Plainview to a standard voltage to increase capacity and speed restoration times.
Within the past year Xcel Energy crews rebuilt the distribution line along the south side of 24th Street as part of a citizen-passed bond issue to improve the street. The company also upgraded transmission structures on the north side of 24th as part of an overall project to improve the entire length of the line.
About Xcel Energy
Xcel Energy (NASDAQ: XEL) provides the energy that powers millions of homes and businesses across eight Western and Midwestern states. Headquartered in Minneapolis, the company is an industry leader in responsibly reducing carbon emissions and producing and delivering clean energy solutions from a variety of renewable sources at competitive prices. For more information, visit xcelenergy.com or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
(Press release from Xcel Energy)