BPA completed $53m line rebuild project in Oregon

The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) completed its Alvey–Fairview 230-kV line rebuild project on Nov. 19, 2015, wrapping up construction that began in the summer of 2014, a BPA spokesperson told TransmissionHub Feb. 2.

The project carried a budget of $53.6m, and actual costs have come in at $53.3m, “but there is still some administrative and accounting work to wrap up, so the numbers may shift slightly,” the spokesperson said.

The project involved rebuilding the existing line between Eugene and Coquile, Ore., in Lane, Douglas and Coos counties, including replacing wooden pole structures with new wooden poles, cross arms, cross braces, insulator assemblies and line switches, BPA said in a description of the project on its website.

The original 97-mile line was built in 1957 and the wooden pole structures became worn and deteriorated, needing replacement to maintain reliable service and avoid risk to the public, BPA said when the project was announced in 2013. The replacement poles were to be added at the same locations and similar heights as the original line, BPA said, noting that existing lattice steel towers that support about 15 miles of the transmission line would remain in place, as would the existing conductor.

In 2014, BPA hired construction contractor Michels Power to complete the two-year construction work in two segments – the 68-mile segment from the Alvey substation to the Reston substation and the 29-mile segment from the Reston substation to the Fairview substation. The Reston-to-Fairview segment was rebuilt during the summer of 2014, and work on the Alvey-to-Reston segment began in the summer of 2015, BPA said in a 2015 project update.

The rebuild activities took place within the existing 125-foot right of way, BPA noted in the update.

When it issued an environmental assessment for the project after receiving comments from 21 entities in 2014, BPA said it would use mitigation measures to limit impact on the environment.

The last pole went into the ground on Oct. 14, 2015, and clean-up work was completed in November 2015, the BPA spokesperson told TransmissionHub.