Blue Racer Midstream, a joint venture between Dominion and Caiman Energy, has taken over the ownership and operatorship of the Natrium natural gas processing and fractionation plant in West Virginia.

On 9 August 2013, Dominion transferred ownership of the plant to Blue Racer, pursuant to its agreement with Caiman Energy.

The facility, which has a cryogenic processing capacity of 200 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d), currently serves production from both the Marcellus and Utica shale plays.

Blue Racer is further expanding the plant capacity to meet the critical need for processing services in the Utica shale.

Work on a second 200MMcf/d cryogenic processing plant has already started, with completion due by the end of first quarter of 2014.

Besides, the company also initiated plans to enhance fractionation capacity to at least 59,000 barrels per day (Bbls/d) from the current 36,000 Bbls/d.

Dominion chairman, president and CEO Thomas F. Farrell II said, "In recent months we have seen a rapid acceleration of drilling and permitting activity."

"Bringing Natrium online, transferring ownership to Blue Racer and initiating expansion plans are important milestones for Blue Racer, Utica producers and the region’s economy," Farrell added.

Blue Racer CEO Jack Lafield said, "Our goal is to create the Utica Shale’s premier midstream company. With 500 miles of gathering pipeline and significant processing and fractionation capacity already up and running, Blue Racer’s assets are uniquely situated to handle rich-gas volumes from all areas of the Utica Shale.

"As producers continue to delineate the play, Blue Racer will keep pace by providing top-tier customer service and the region’s best opportunity to gather and process rich gas and market NGLs."

"We are proud to be working alongside Dominion’s team, including its NGL marketing group, unquestionably the regional leader in providing access to liquids markets in the Northeast," Lafield added.