JEA board approves $11 million in property purchases to expand infrastructure

The utility plans an electric substation to accommodate Mayo Clinic growth and a wastewater facility near Jacksonville International Airport.

JEA plans to build an electric substation northwest of Mayo Clinic’s San Pablo campus.
JEA plans to build an electric substation northwest of Mayo Clinic’s San Pablo campus.
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The JEA board voted 7-0 on Jan. 28 to move ahead on two land purchases totaling nearly $11 million to expand its electric system infrastructure in southeast Jacksonville and support a new wastewater treatment plant north of Jacksonville International Airport.

The utility plans to build a larger electric substation northwest of Mayo Clinic’s San Pablo campus on 10.5 acres.

According to an interoffice memorandum from utility CEO Jay Stowe, the existing San Pablo electric substation is reaching load capacity, partially due to Mayo Clinic’s planned campus expansion.

The hospital system is building a 146,000-square-foot, six-story addition and making other renovations to its 4500 San Pablo Road S. campus.

According to the memo, JEA reached a deal with land owned by Estuary LLC to buy the property for $5.25 million. The board’s vote directs JEA staff to complete the negotiations.

The land is next to a JEA utility corridor, making the new substation easier to integrate into the electric grid, according to board documents.

Stowe’s memo says the land was appraised at $5.48 million, and JEA has found no issues in its due diligence work

“The new substation will allow JEA to link this part of the service territory to the Greenland Energy Center once the necessary property rights for a connecting corridor have been secured,” the memo states.

The second purchase approved Jan. 28 is a 456.82-acre parcel northwest of the airport for a new wastewater treatment facility.

JEA staff recommended the board approve the land purchase for $5.733 million. The utility’s appraisal values the land at $5.94 million, board documents state.

Stowe says in his memo that the wastewater treatment facility will be built in a “largely underserved” area of JEA’s territory and also would be suitable for a future electric substation.