JEFF DAVIS PARISH, LA (KPLC) - Entergy is ringing in the new year with a facelift for its Jefferson Davis Parish electrical power grid - a big one. Starting January 2018, Entergy began a $100 million dollar project, which will add close to 60 miles of new and upgraded power lines, ultimately covering 900 square miles.
"We saw an opportunity there to make the system more robust," said Chip Arnould, an Entergy senior region manager. "A lot of this project is rebuilding existing power lines."
According to Arnould, the goal of the project is to "...increase transmission capacity and help ensure the availability of affordable power now and into the future for the parish."
The new and rebuilt power lines will utilize steel structures, which Entergy said can withstand winds of up to 140 miles per hour.
"In times of storm, in times of outages that are required for maintenance, they [customers] should see less outages," Arnould said.
The project will be completed in early 2020, but Arnould wants to warn Jeff. Davis residents to be on the lookout for delays on Highways 90 and 395 during construction. Some Entergy customers will also experience brief outages during the upgrade process, according to Arnould.
"We do have a comprehensive communication plan," said Arnould. "All of these customers will be communicated with in advance, so they can know and understand when the outages will occur."
Upon completion of the project, Arnould said Entergy Louisiana customers can expect to see around a 33 cent increase in their bill.
Click here for more information on other Entergy projects taking place around Southwest Louisiana.