The Cirkovce-Pince transmission project is an 80.5km, 400kV overhead power transmission line being constructed to connect the electricity network of Slovenia to the existing interconnection between Croatia and Hungary.
Owned and developed by Slovenia’s transmission system operator ELES, the power transmission network will result in two cross-border circuits, from Cirkovce (Slovenia) to Žerjavinec (Croatia), and from Cirkovce (Croatia) to Hévíz (Hungary).
The £135.79m (€150m) project will also feature the construction of a new Cirkovce switchyard to enable the implementation of Slovenia’s first international power connection with Hungary.
While the construction works were started in October 2020, the Cirkovce-Pince power line is expected to be fully operational by December 2022.
The archaeological research works at 31 locations along the project route are underway for the protection of cultural heritage.
The double circuit power transmission line will start from the Cirkovce substation in the Lower Styria region of north-eastern Slovenia to the border settlement of Pince, which forms a triangle border to Slovenia, Croatia, and Hungary.
The power line will connect to the Croatian TSO HOPS substation in Žerjavinec near Zagreb in Croatia as well as the Hungarian TSO MAVIR substation in Hévíz, Zala County, Hungary.
The Cirkovce-Pince will traverse through the municipalities of Kidričevo, Videm pri Ptuju, Markovci, Gorišnica, Ormož, Ljutomer, Beltinci, Črešnovci, Velika Polana, and Lendava.
Cirkovce-Pince transmission line design
The Cirkovce-Pince transmission project involves the construction of 80.5km of 400kV double circuit overhead transmission line network with 264 towers and optical fibres.
New Cirkovce-Pince substation
The Cirkovce-Pince power transmission project also involves the construction of a new 400/100kV substation along with a control station at the existing Cirkovce substation. The exiting 200/110kV substation will be reconstructed as a new 110kV switchyard.
The substation is being constructed in phases with a total estimated investment of £53.42m (€60m).
Cirkovce-Pince power transmission project finance
ELES and the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) signed a contract worth €48.22m (£40.71m) for the co-financing of the Cirkovce-Pince transmission project in December 2019.
A consortium of Dalekovod and C & G Companies was contracted for the construction of the double-circuit 400kV overhead Cirkovce-Pince power transmission line in July 2020. The scope of the contract includes the supply and installation of steel structures along with the electrical installation works.
ELES and HOPS (transmission system operator of Croatia) signed an agreement for geographical positioning and the construction of a 1.3km corridor of the Cirkovce-Pince power transmission project in April 2018.
ELES has also partnered with MAVIR, the Hungarian TSO, for the development of the project.
Oikon provided environmental and nature protection documentation for the project in 2018.
Cirkovce-Pince power transmission project background
The proposal for the construction of a 2 x 400kV transmission line connection to Hungary on the Cirkovce-Pince route was disclosed by the Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning in October 2009.
The project was included in the category of electricity connections in the north-south priority corridor in Central and Eastern Europe by the European Commission in 2013. It was then approved by the European Commission and was acknowledged as a project of common interest (PCI) in November 2015.
The Slovenian Environment Agency of the Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning granted environmental approval for the construction of the Cirkovce-Pince and the 400/110kV Cirkovce substation project in March 2018.
The project intends to facilitate access to eastern electricity markets for affordable electricity to Slovenian consumers. It also aims to reduce the power transmission load on the current Maribor substation.