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Williams sets Oct. 6 full-service date for $3B Atlantic Sunrise gas project

Williams Cos. Inc. will place its $3 billion Atlantic Sunrise natural gas pipeline expansion project into service Oct. 6, providing the full takeaway capacity of up to 1.7 Bcf/d to an infrastructure-constrained region of the Marcellus Shale.

Williams' Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Co. LLC has already placed about 550 MMcf/d of gas transportation capacity from the project into service. In a statement, Williams said placing the project in full service increases the design capacity of the Transco pipeline system by about 12%, to 15.8 Bcf/d.

"This project makes the largest-volume pipeline system in the country even larger, further executing on our strategy to connect premier natural gas supply areas with the best markets in the country," Williams President, CEO and director Alan Armstrong said in a statement.

"The project is significant for Pennsylvania and natural gas-consuming markets all along the East Coast, alleviating infrastructure bottlenecks and providing millions of consumers direct access to one of the most abundant, cost-effective natural gas supply sources in the country," Armstrong said.

The Atlantic Sunrise project is designed to move Marcellus gas deep into the Southeast along the Transco mainline. A report from Morningstar Inc. said the project will help supply Dominion Energy Inc.'s Cove Point LNG export terminal in Maryland, LNG terminals on the Gulf Coast and other end users in the South.

Cabot Oil & Gas Corp., a producer that is heavily active in the northeastern corner of Pennsylvania, is contracted for 1 Bcf/d of the project's 1.7-Bcf/d capacity.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission gave Transco permission to place into service the last parts of the expansion in an Oct. 4 letter order. The pipeline company had asked FERC for the authorization after pushing back the mechanical completion and in-service date because of construction delays caused by heavy rain. (FERC dockets CP15-138, CP17-212)

The project consists of about 200 miles of new pipeline and new compressor stations in Pennsylvania and modifications along the Transco mainline.