MHS-11 Substation

The City of Medicine Hat is proposing a new substation (MHS-11) to accommodate the growth and increasing electrical needs in the southwest area of the City and the City’s electric service territory. 

Following a lengthy regulatory review process, the Alberta Utilities Commission released a decision on June 12, 2023 denying the application outlining the need to reevaluate the site selection process. The City is reviewing the decision report and will be working towards a plan to move this project forward. If you wish to review the licence decision, visit under proceeding number 27417.

Project phases
Phase 1: Stage 1 - Site Evaluation and Regulatory Review Present alternative site options 2019-2022
Phase 1: Stage 2 - Site Evaluation and Regulatory Review Present preferred site option Application filed June 1, 2022
Phase 1: Stage 3 - Site Evaluation and Regulatory Review Regulatory submission, review and approval June 2022 - 2023
Application declined by the AUC on June 12, 2023
Review the facility application

The regulatory process began with the submission of the Facility Application to the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) on June 1, 2022 (Proceeding Number 27417). The City of Medicine Hat submitted two possible locations for the project, one preferred and one alternate.

If you wish to review the application and associated reports filed with the AUC, you can access them through the AUC website at You will be required to set up an account and, once set up, you can search for the filing using the proceeding number 27417. If you are having difficulty accessing the information, please contact the project team.

Following a lengthy regulatory review, the AUC rejected the application on June 12, 2023.

Who approves the substation?
The Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) regulates the construction of electrical infrastructure. For more information on the regulator review process and application requirements, please view the following links:
Materials and information

Frequently asked questions

The project team heard from many participants throughout the engagement process and identified some common questions and concerns that are addressed here.

What about the environment?

The City has been engaging with Alberta Environment and Parks since the onset of the Project and their feedback has been incorporated into the evaluation of sites and the surveys undertaken as part of the environmental evaluation.

Surveys have been conducted for both sites and include:

  • Raptor stick nest
  • Visual amphibian
  • Snake hibernacula
  • Breeding bird surveys
  • Early and late rare plants
  • Wetlands/watercourses

Results of the environmental evaluation have been compiled and presented to the AUC for their  consideration in the regulatory review process and site selection.

Will there be a continuous loud noise from the substation?
The substation will meet the provincial guidelines for noise set forth in AUC’s Rule 012. The results of the Noise Impact Assessment have been provided to the AUC for their consideration.
Are there health effects associated with living in proximity to a substation?

The City of Medicine Hat understands this concern and there is significant industry research that has been done on electric and magnetic fields. City of Medicine Hat will follow the guidelines of national and international agencies.

Health Canada states that:

The potential health effects of extremely low frequency EMF has been studied extensively. While some people are concerned that long term exposure to extremely low frequency EMF may cause cancer, the scientific evidence does not support such claims.

As you move away, your level of exposure rapidly decreases. When you are inside your home, the electric fields from transformer boxes and high voltage power lines are often weaker than the fields from household electrical appliances.

If you would like more information on the topic, please contact our project team.

Will there be continuous light from the substation?
There will be a need to illuminate the site (Alberta Electrical Utility Code – 8-222) and we will work to reduce the potential lighting that could affect local residents. This could include different types of lights, lowered lighting, or shielding.
Isn't the City trying to build this project on land that isn't designated for this type of development?

Utilities (such as transmission lines or substations) are permitted uses in all districts whether they are listed uses in the district or not.

Will this project affect property value?

The City of Medicine Hat takes this concern seriously, however many factors go into the evaluation of property. As no locations are exactly the same it is difficult to compare values when there are various criteria that can determine the outcome.

What is the City doing from a safety perspective?

A substation site will be fenced and there will be restricted access to the site for members of the public. If there were to be an incident at site, City representatives will follow guidelines set forth in their emergency response plans for city facilities.