Transwestern Pipeline last week announced a major system expansion that would allow it to serve the growing Phoenix market for the first time.

The proposed Sun Devil project would entail almost doubling the capacity on Transwestern’s existing San Juan Lateral, an expansion of its mainline capacity to California and the addition of a 175-mile Phoenix Lateral, which a spokeswoman for the Enron pipeline said would follow the I-17 highway corridor to Phoenix and then veer west to serve the expanding power generation market in the state. El Paso Natural Gas is the sole pipeline serving those markets now.

The Phoenix Lateral, which would begin near Flagstaff, NM, would provide up to 450,000 Mcf/d to the Phoenix gas market, the spokeswoman noted, while an additional 780,000 Mcf/d would be added via looping and new compression to the 850,000 Mcf/d San Juan Lateral, which runs from the Blanco Hub south to Thoreau, NM. Transwestern also plans to add about 90,000 Mcf/d to its existing 1.09 MMcf/d capacity from Thoreau to the California border, and to later add 150,000 Mcf/d at Redrock for delivery to California. The projected in-service date for the Sun Devil expansion is January 2004.

Transwestern already has launched an open season to solicit bids from firm shippers for the proposed capacity on the Thoreau-to-California segment of its mainline, from Blanco to Thoreau on the San Juan Lateral and on the new Phoenix Lateral. It will expire on Aug. 30.

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