Northern Pass representatives have met with hundreds of people from across the state to listen to their input on the project. We’ve heard from a number of stakeholders and residents that Northern Pass must find a balance between providing unique economic and clean energy benefits to New Hampshire while minimizing potential impacts to its scenic landscapes.
To address these concerns, Northern Pass developed a redesigned route that replaces overhead lines in and around the White Mountain National Forest, the Franconia Notch area, the Rocks Estate area, and along the Appalachian Trail with a new 52-mile section of underground line. In its draft Environmental Impact Statement, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) determined the project could reduce potential impacts by adding more underground line, and this addition of underground line in the Northern Pass route incorporates portions of the route alternatives studied by the DOE. By placing the line underground in these areas, it eliminates potential visual impacts while also ensuring that the energy remains affordable.
The redesigned Northern Pass route also aims to minimize impacts by using existing transmission corridors and public roadways. More than 80 percent of the route is now within these existing rights-of-way. The remaining portion of the route is located on property either purchased or leased from willing landowners.
The proposed Northern Pass line crosses the Canadian border in Pittsburg and heads south into Clarksville, as was previously proposed. The line travels underground in two separate areas of Clarksville and Stewartstown for a total of 8 miles.
The line then travels overhead into Grafton County where it again goes underground in Bethlehem where the transmission corridor meets Route 302 near Miller Pond. It travels underground to Route 18 into Sugar Hill and heads underground along this road, as well as portions of Route 116, Route 112 and Route 3 into Bridgewater, where the line returns to overhead. From there the line travels to Franklin, where it is converted from direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC). The line continues overhead into Deerfield, where it enters the New England electric grid at a substation on Cate Road.