Bethel-Norwalk 345 kV Project

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Client: Northeast Utilities
Location: Connecticut, USA

POWER provided a full range of project implementation services, from preliminary engineering through construction management and inspection, for a major project to improve power transmission reliability in southwest Connecticut. The project was cited for excellence by the Edison Electric Institute in its 2009 Edison Award to Northeast Utilities. POWER’s scope included the extension of 345 kV transmission from Plumtree Substation to Norwalk Substation and the addition and modification of existing 115 kV transmission in the area. The 345 kV work included 10 miles of underground using high-pressure fluid-filled cables, 2.1 miles of underground using solid dielectric cables, and 8.6 miles of overhead line. The 115 kV work included 11.5 miles of underground using solid dielectric cables. POWER also designed three transition stations at points where the 345 kV transmission changed from overhead to underground. Before final design, POWER secured the right of way for the line through heavily populated areas.

This project involved a number of challenges. It required 100% compliance with the Development and Management plan, which was approved by the Connecticut Siting Council and amended only with CSC approval. A procedure was developed in which timely approvals were obtained with only minor impacts to the schedule.

POWER provided full construction management services with a resident engineer, office engineers, construction managers, inspectors, contracts administrators and schedulers. NU issued construction RFPs for the project. POWER’s construction management staff coordinated with NU during the contractor selection process and then provided management services during construction. Most of these contractors were working on the project simultaneously, and required construction access to the line rights of way and the sites of the transition stations at the same time, requiring construction management staff to carefully coordinate and schedule the work.

 Because of the scope and scale of this project, NU implemented an incentive plan with POWER that measured four critical areas: safety, environmental compliance, schedule, and budget. POWER received a 100% score and completed the project ahead of schedule.