Home > Overview

What’s Happening In Your Neighborhood?

We are installing 230-kilovolt double circuit underground electric transmission lines between the existing Lacombe and Barker substations, installing equipment and energizing the Barker Substation site, and installing underground electric distribution lines to connect to our existing electric system for the Lacombe to Barker Underground Transmission Project (Project) in Denver, Colorado.

The underground electric transmission lines will be installed in 20th Street from the Lacombe Substation west of Chestnut Place to the alley between Blake and Market Streets, and along the alley between 20th Street and the Barker Substation located on the west corner of 21st and Market streets.

The system in this area does not currently have the capability to reliably serve the customer electric need anticipated for the future. This work allows us to continue to provide safe, reliable electric service and enhances system resiliency.


Meeting The Need

Xcel Energy is building a better, cleaner energy future by taking steps to create a smarter and stronger energy grid, for a more secure energy supply. This commitment includes building new infrastructure to meet current and future needs.

The Denver metropolitan area has experienced unprecedented growth in recent years which has increased the demand for additional, reliable electricity. The system in this area, as it exists today, does not have the capability to reliably serve the additional customer electric need (load growth) anticipated for the future.

Substations play a key role in helping ensure a high-quality power supply for existing and future customers. Additional substation facilities are required to deliver electricity to the load centers where energy needs are the greatest.

Distribution substations, like Lacombe Substation, are a key component of any electric delivery system. They receive electric power from high-voltage lines and reduce these higher voltage levels to lower levels. Once the voltage is reduced, it is distributed to customers by way of electric distribution lines or “feeders.”

Each substation in Denver can provide electricity to a certain number of customers over specific distances. As neighborhoods continue to grow, and demand for electricity increases, substations reach their capacity and become unable to supply enough low-voltage electricity to meet customer demand. We build additional substations, including the Barker Substation, in areas that are growing and developing rapidly to ensure there is enough low-voltage electricity to serve local homes and businesses.


Construction will occur in four phases between 2024 and 2026:

  • Phase 1: February 2024 – spring 2024: Electric transmission line open trench installation.
  • Phase 2: fall 2024 – spring 2025: Electric transmission line bore installation.
  • Phase 3: early 2024 – 2026: Barker Substation and Lacombe Substation construction, limited public impacts.
  • Phase 4: TBD: Electric distribution lines open trenching installation.

Schedules are subject to change.


Construction Impacts

During work in early 2024, you will notice:

  • Marking of utility lines and utility survey holes
  • Road and sidewalk closures
  • Traffic control
  • Temporary changes to access
  • Construction noise

The first phase of construction will begin in February 2024, where we will install electric transmission lines by open trenching which involves digging a trench and placing the transmission line in the trench.

During this work, crews will work Monday through Saturday between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. In certain situations crews may be required to work evenings, nights, or weekends.

In future phases of construction, we will also install electric transmission lines by boring, which uses a bore machine to create an underground pathway through which the line is pulled.

We will restore work areas to preconstruction conditions as weather allows. Work areas may be left temporarily restored after construction until we can complete final restoration.