Summary of Town Hall Meeting: December 11, 2014
The Village held its fourth annual town hall meeting with representatives of ComEd, giving residents and businesses an opportunity to speak directly with the ComEd engineers who work on the delivery system in Downers Grove.
For the fourth consecutive year, Village staff also shared its key findings of an analysis of ComEd outages. Staff found the following:
- Overall, outages are lower in 2014 than through the same period in 2013.
- Weather-related outages are tracking to be lower in 2014 than in any other year since the Village began reviewing data. The weather in spring and summer of 2014 was milder than previous years, which may contribute to the decrease.
- Equipment failures continued to be the most frequent cause of outages; however, equipment-related outages are tracking to be lower in 2014 than 2013.
- Weather causes outages of the longest duration. Outages of long duration are trending to be lower in 2014 than in previous years. Outages of longer than 24 hours decreased from 23 in 2013 to 11 in 2014 (YTD). Nine of the 11 outages took place during severe weather between June 30 and July 3 and were related to tree damage or lighting.
ComEd also shared a summary of equipment upgrades and improvements it has made since 2012, including:
- 22 miles of New Underground Cable
- 2 miles of New Tree-Resistant Overhead Cable
- Distribution Automation Devices that Reroute Electricity to Isolate Outages
- Wood Pole and Equipment Inspections and Replacement
In 2015, ComEd is planning the following improvements:
- Additional Distribution Automation
- 7 miles of Additional New Underground Cable
- Inspection and Treatment of 1,900 Wood Poles
- Smart Meters Starting in 2016
Residents and businesses are welcome to contact Village staff with additional concerns over reliability and outages. Many of the improvements that have been made have been the result of residents coming forward with concerns over frequent outages or concerns about trees and other equipment.
Town Hall Meeting: December 11, 2014
The Village will host a ComEd Town Hall meeting at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 11, 2014, at the Public Works Building, 5101 Walnut Avenue. This is part of the Village's ongoing work to improve electricity service within the Village. The purpose of this meeting will be to report on the progress made during the past year. It is also an opportunity for residents to communicate their reliability concerns directly to ComEd Representatives.
Thanks to the community input received in the past, and the Village's ongoing communications with ComEd, the utility has made significant progress on improvements in a timely manner. A list of these improvements will be available soon.
If you are unable to attend but would like to forward a comment or concern regarding ComEd reliability, please call 630-434-5525.
Town Hall Meeting: September 19, 2013
The Village hosted a ComEd Town Hall meeting on September 19, 2013, at the Public Works Building, 5101 Walnut Avenue.
The purpose of the meeting was to report on the progress made during the past year. It was also an opportunity for residents to communicate any ongoing reliability concerns to ComEd. Both the Village and ComEd made presentations at the meeting. The Village's presentation summarized the findings of the 2013 Reliability Report.
3/25/13 ComEd has provided the Village with its electric reliability improvement plans for 2013. The following circuits will see equipment upgrades or tree trimming projects.
|Location||Equipment Upgrade||Tree Trimming|
|North of Ogden, West of Venard||September-October|
|North of Ogden, West of Highland||October-November|
|North of Butterfield, East of Finley||February-April|
|Butterfield and Finley||February-March|
|63rd and Woodward||September-October|
|South of 63rd and Woodward||September-October|
|South of 63rd and Woodward||August-September|
|South of 63rd and Main Street||June 2012-March 2013|
|East of 63rd and Main Street||February-April|
|55th and Fairview||May-June|
|Northwest of Lemont Road and 75th Street||September-October|
|West of Main Street, South of Maple||May|
|Southwest of 75th Street and Fairview||April-May|
|Northeast of Lemont Road and 75th Street||September-October|
|Southwest of 75th Street and Fairview||April|
|Northwest of Lemont Road and 75th Street||April|
|South of 75th Street and Fairview||April|
|South of 63rd and Main Street||April|
|East of 63rd and Main Street||May|
|Northwest of 75th Street and Fairview||May|
|Northeast of Lemont Road and 75th Street||June|
|55th and Fairview||June|
|East of 75th Street and Fairview||July|
|North of Ogden, West of Highland||July|
|South of 63rd and Woodward||September|
|West of Main Street, South of Maple||October|
|Southeast of 63rd and Woodward||November|
|West of Belmont, between Burlington and Ogden||December|
|Northwest of Maple and Fairview||December|
|Southwest of Maple and Fairview||December|
|North of Maple, West of Lee||December|
2012 Town Hall Meeting
The Village hosted a Town Hall meeting on September 20, 2012. The purpose of the meeting was to report on the progress made during the past year and provide an opportunity for residents to communicate any ongoing reliability concerns to ComEd.
- Meeting Agenda
- Progress Report
- ComEd Meeting Presentation
- Village Meeting Presentation
- Meeting Podcast
The Village presented their ComEd Reliability Report at a Town Hall meeting on Thursday, September 15, 2011. ComEd representatives were present to address issues identified within the Reliability Report. Village and State elected officials were also in attendance as were several residents who provided feedback about service interruptions.
The Village of Downers Grove experienced two major storms in 2011 resulting in power outages throughout the community. The storms, related power outages and comments from residents prompted the Village to examine the overall reliability of the electrical distribution system owned and operated by Commonwealth Edison (ComEd). Through the analysis of outage data filed with the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) dating back to 2007, Village staff examined the number of outages and their cause to recommend actions that ComEd should take to improve reliability. The need for ComEd to improve communications with its customers is also clearly outlined.
Reliability Report Key Findings
- The Village has experienced 1,482 power outages since 2007. Equipment related issues were the number one cause of these outages.
- The 10 circuits that saw the most number of power outages experienced an average of 10.75 to 19.25 outages per year from 2007 to 2010.
- Equipment related issues were the leading cause of outages in 5 of these circuits. Weather/tree related issues were the leading cause in 5 of these circuits.
- Make improvements to the distribution system to reduce outages caused by faulty equipment.
- Increase tree trimming to reduce outages caused by tree contact during severe storms.
- Make improvements to the 10 circuits that have experienced the greatest number of outages and continue to make improvements to the remaining circuits once the top 10 are corrected.
Following the September 15, 2011 meeting, ComEd commited to provide an action plan based on recommendations in the Village's Reliability Report within 30 days.
Since the meeting, ComEd has done the following:
- Investigated each of the concerns raised at the meeting.
- Contacted the majority of residents who raised specific concerns at the meeting.
- Provided a plan for addressing most of the concerns that ComEd felt were actionable.
- Provided an explanation for not addressing some of the concerns.
The general timeframes provided by ComEd for making improvements that will improve reliability include:
- The scheduling of targeted tree trimming to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2012.
- The completion of Mechanical/Equipment repairs by Summer 2012.
At the May 1, 2012 Village Council meeting, ComEd's new Emergency Preparedness Protocols were presented.
At the September 15, 2011 Town Hall Meeting, ComEd presented plans for tree trimming and equipment upgrades intended to reduce the risk of outages in areas identified in the Village's Reliability Report. The chart below shows which projects have been completed.
|Location||Enhanced Tree Trimming||Equipment Upgrades|
|Near int. of 63rd St.
|W of Highland,
extending to I-88
from I-355 to Main St.
|NW of DG South HS||Complete||N/A|
|S of Burlington to 59th,
bet, I-355 and Fairview
|N of Ogden, bet. Fairview
|Far South, east of Main||Complete||Complete|
|Along Prairie Ave., w of
NEW OUTAGE REPORTING SYSTEM
In response to dissatisfaction with customer service and communication during the summer of 2011, ComEd has created an outage alert system through which customers can use their cell phones to receive outage restoration information and to report outages to ComEd. To sign up for the program, visit ComEd's website.
ComEd has notified the Village that it will complete its Targeted Tree Trimming efforts in Downers Grove by the end of February.
There are two equipment upgrades promised by ComEd that staff is tracking to ensure completion by the promised deadline of June 2012. The first is the installation of reinforced overhead cable in the area near 55th Street and Maple, which ComEd assures will be less susceptible to storm damage. The second is the installation of similar reinforced cable in the far northern part of the Village near 35th Street and Highland Avenue.
ComEd is also adding an additional equipment upgrade project in Downers Grove consisting of the replacement of 4,400 feet of underground cable in the circuit serving the area near 63rd Street and Main Street. This project is part of the infrastructure upgrades provided under the Smart Grid Bill and is planned for second half of 2012.
ComEd notified the Village that it recently completed two equipment upgrade projects in circuits identified by the Village as priorities for ComEd equipment investment. The equipment upgrades consisted of the replacement of 500 feet of underground cable east of Main Street between Bonnie Brae and Lancaster Ave and the replacement of 500 feet of underground cable near School Street and Herbert Street. The timing of equipment upgrades is consistent with the timelines presented by ComEd at the Town Hall meeting in September 2011.
During the summer of 2011, the Village of Downers Grove completed a review of the reliability of the electricity service supplied by ComEd to the residents and businesses of Downers Grove. The report concluded that weather and tree-related issues caused 54% of the outages within the Village between 2007 and 2010. The Village identified the 10 circuits within the Village that were most vulnerable to service outages and requested that ComEd provide a plan for improving reliability in those priority circuits, including efforts to improve and/or increase tree trimming and vegetation control efforts to reduce the number of outages caused by weather/tree related issues. ComEd presented a plan for improving reliability at a public meeting September 15, 2011 and stated that it would perform enhanced tree trimming in eight of the ten circuits identified by the Village. ComEd also provided plans to perform enhanced tree trimming in three additional circuits that its records showed were also vulnerable to tree-related outages.
ComEd has completed its review of the priority circuits and has provided tree trimming plans to the Village. Tree trimming efforts are scheduled to commence in the first quarter of 2012, and may start as early as January. The Village Forester has reviewed the plans and the affected areas and agrees that the planned tree trimming, which includes removing some trees with owner permission, will be beneficial to improved reliability. The Village will require Com Ed to notify the affected property owners of pending tree trimming.
ComEd has reported that they have completed the field review of the Downers Grove circuits that were identified for targeted tree trimming. Their work scope will be finalized within the next few weeks and they will meet with Village staff to review. The Village will provide this information to residents as it becomes available. Staff will monitor ComEd's progress.
The documents listing the concerns raised at the Town Hall meeting and the corresponding ComEd responses are available here. Also included is a Fact Sheet regarding ComEd's Vegetation Management practices.
- Responses to Resident Concerns (Updated 9-20-12)
- Improvement Plans for Priority Circuits (Updated 9-5-12)
- Vegetation Fact Sheet
Attached is the podcast of the September 15, 2011 meeting and related presentations.