NYPA awards refurbishment contracts for 1,160-MW Blenheim-Gilboa

The New York Power Authority awarded two contracts totaling $2.8 million for refurbishment work at its 1,160-MW Blenheim-Gilboa Pumped-Storage project in the Northern Catskill Mountains of New York.

NYPA trustees approved the contracts May 19, 2009, to D.A. Collins Co. of Mechanicville, N.Y., for refurbishment of tainter gates used to control water flow, and to Northline Utilities of Au Sable Forks, N.Y., for installation and replacement of circuit breakers.

D.A. Collins is to work on two of Blenheim-Gilboa’s three tainter gates over the next two years under one contract worth nearly $2.2 million. The state-owned electric utility said the gates must be maintained to ensure proper operation so water can flow easily from the project’s upper reservoir and avoid overtopping the dam. Following detailed inspections in 2007 and 2008, NYPA determined the gates would need to be refurbished.

In 2008, D.A. Collins Co. completed work at NYPA’s 11.8-MW Crescent hydroelectric plant (No. 4678) on the Mohawk River, in the Capital District (HydroWorld 5/30/06), as well as work on Blenheim-Gilboa’s other tainter gate.

Northline Utilities’ contract for installation of new circuit breakers is worth $604,000. In 2002, NYPA instituted a program to replace all nine existing circuit breakers at the facility. Since that time, seven breakers have been replaced. Northline Utilities is to install the final two circuit breakers over the next two years.

NYPA is conducting a four-year, $135 million program to modernize and extend the life of Blenheim-Gilboa (No. 2685), which begam service in 1973. NYPA announced in June 2008 it refurbished and returned to service the second of the four units. (HydroWorld 6/6/08) The project is located in the towns of Blenheim and Gilboa, southwest of Albany.

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