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Media Contact: Gail Rice (207) 622 NEWS


 

CMP Energizes 345,000 Volt Substation and Transmission Line in Benton, Maine

 

AUGUSTA, Maine, May 2, 2013 — Central Maine Power Company (CMP), a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, energized its new Albion Road Substation in Benton this week. Putting the $42 million, 345 kilovolt (kV) substation into service marks a significant milestone in the utility’s Maine Power Reliability Program (MPRP), a $1.4 billion upgrade of CMP’s bulk electric transmission system in Maine.

 

“Putting our second major substation, autotransformer, and transmission line into service marks a major achievement for CMP and the thousands of people who work as a part of the MPRP every day,” said Doug Herling, CMP vice president for Special Projects and executive sponsor of the MPRP. “Having our Albion Road Substation on line increases our bulk electric transmission capacity and reliability, and this benefits customers throughout the northern part of our service area.”

 

The 10-acre facility includes one 345kV autotransformer, three 345kV breakers, 10 115kV breakers, and complete integration of IEC 61850 communications technology. The substation will serve as the junction of two 345kV and five 115kV transmission lines.

 

Maine-based contractors played major roles in construction of the Albion Road Substation. Sargent Corporation of Stillwater performed the major ground work, and Cianbro Corporation of Pittsfield completed the electrical work. Together, the firms employed hundreds of workers from within Maine. Other Maine employers, including Precast Concrete Products of Topsham and Casco Systems of Cumberland, also contributed to the project.

 

Electric Power Systems (EPS), the commissioning contractor, which has an office in Brunswick, Maine, completed the testing and commissioning process to prepare the substation for the interconnection of one of the new MPRP 345kV transmission lines.

 

Along with the substation, CMP energized a new 345-kilovolt (kV) transmission line connecting CMP’s system to the transmission system serving northern Maine. The new line starts at the Albion Road Substation, runs 59 miles through 13 communities in four counties, and connects with Bangor Hydro-Electric Company’s new Orrington Substation. This provides a reliable loop to support the existing 345kV transmission system. The line runs atop 437 wooden H-frame structures, and at the Penobscot River crossing in Bucksport and Winterport, two lattice towers, each over 350 feet tall, carry the line 2,400 feet across the river, one of the longest spans in all of CMP’s system.

 

As with the substation, hundreds of people worked with MYR Construction and Aldridge Electric for nearly a year to complete the project. Maine contractors included Shaw Brothers Construction of Gorham, Global Environmental of South Portland, and Maine Drilling and Blasting of Gardiner.

 

“We are quite proud of the efforts put forth by Maine workers and contractors to complete these key portions of our system,” Herling said. “Hundreds of men and women helped build the Albion Road Substation and the new transmission line, two more examples of how CMP and the MPRP are building a stronger, smarter grid for Maine.”

 

Central Maine Power Company’s MPRP is a $1.4 billion investment in Maine’s bulk power transmission system. The most significant upgrade in more than four decades, the MRPP will ensure continued grid reliability and improved access to the region’s bulk power system for the state’s growing renewable and non-renewable energy industries. The five-year project includes the construction of four new substations with 345 kV autotransformers, one 345 kV switchyard, plus upgrades to more than 40 existing substations, and the installation or rebuilding of nearly 440 miles of transmission line in 75 communities from Eliot to Orrington. Since the start of construction in 2010, the MPRP has provided a timely stimulus to the Maine economy, employing nearly 2,700 workers among contractors, consultants and suppliers, plus as many as 900 more jobs through indirect and induced employment spurred by the construction spending. CMP expects to complete construction on the MPRP in mid-2015.

 

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About Central Maine Power Company (CMP): Central Maine Power Company, a subsidiary of Iberdrola USA, is Maine’s largest electricity transmission and distribution utility. The company delivers about 9 billion kilowatt hours of electricity annually to more than 600,000 homes and businesses, representing about 80% of Maine’s annual consumer sales of electricity. The company has been ranked #1 in customer satisfaction seven times by J.D. Power and Associates. For more information, visit cmpco.com .

 

About Iberdrola USA: Iberdrola USA, a subsidiary of global energy leader Iberdrola, S.A., is an energy services and delivery company serving more than 2.4 million customers in upstate New York and New England. For more information about Iberdrola USA, visit www.iberdrolausa.com.