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NYPA advances multimillion-dollar infrastructure refurbishment at Niagara Power Project in Lewiston

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Thu, May 9th 2019 03:30 pm

The New York Power Authority announced the approval of a $16 million contract for two critical projects designed to keep NYPA’s Niagara Power Project generating clean, economical energy without interruption.

The nine-year contract will support a multiphase refurbishment of the Niagara Power Project’s head gates and stop log rails, two large underwater mechanical structures associated with each of the project’s 13 turbine generating units. The head gates and stop log rails help isolate the turbine chambers, creating a dry environment for periodic turbine generator overhauls and other maintenance work.

“While the Power Authority works to become the first fully digital utility in the country, the maintenance and management of our existing plants continues apace,” said Gil C. Quiniones, NYPA president and CEO. “We are committed to the careful, collaborative work of upgrading and maintaining all of NYPA’s assets so that they can operate at maximum efficiency for decades to come.”

The NYPA board of trustees authorized the contract awards to BVR Construction of Churchville at its March 26 meeting.

Work to overhaul the head gates and stop log rails began in 2011 and 2018, respectively, following an underwater inspection that identified deteriorating conditions due to age and the presence of zebra mussels and debris. Currently, 15 head gates and one stop log rail have been refurbished on the 13 turbine generating units. Under the BVR contract, the scope of work involves the removal and refurbishment of the rails and associated parts, cleaning and recoating of the exposed steel surfaces and concrete repairs as necessary. Working around planned maintenance outages, the work is expected to continue through 2027 and cost a total of $21.8 million.

Both programs are helping to realize Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s “Reforming the Energy Vision” strategy for building a cleaner, resilient and reliable energy system throughout the state.

These upgrades are a foundational element in the Power Authority’s smart generation and transmission and asset management strategic initiatives.

NYPA is the largest state public power organization in the nation, operating 16 generating facilities and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines. More than 70 percent of the electricity NYPA produces is clean renewable hydropower. NYPA uses no tax money or state credit. It finances its operations through the sale of bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of electricity. For more information, visit www.nypa.gov.

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