BC Hydro
Merritt Distribution Line Project

Address (Map): , Merritt, British Columbia V1K 0A1 Canada
Sector: Major Utilities
MCW Office: Winnipeg
Status: Complete
Sub Categories: Overhead Distribution

Project Description

The original overhead line built in the late 1950’s had reached end of life and was becoming unreliable.  Due to the remoteness of the pole line built on top of the mountain bluffs accessible only by helicopter, maintenance and repair was a significant issue. This 25kV line was to be rebuilt and relocated along the road allowance on Hwy#5 in the environmentally sensitive Nicola Valley, home to a diverse set of wildlife, in order to improve service and accessibility.

MCW's role was to deliver turnkey project management and design, building the asset model in BC Hydro’s GIS, following BC Hydro standards for overhead distribution, and provide professional of record and coordinating engineer services for this project. Construction support was provided as required to address any unforeseen issues that may arise. The deliverables were overhead line design, structural analysis for non-standard push brace designs, coordination with 3rd party utilities, coordination and approvals with the Ministry of Transportation Infrastructure, meeting other stakeholders including the Upper Nicola First Nation and the various land owners along the intended line route, along with consideration of numerous archaeological and environmental sites. 

Project management functions included preparation of a project plan, risk register and financial controls for all aspects through to construction and closeout. Coordination was required with numerous stakeholders including capital planning, contracts, lines construction, design, environmental, archeological, geotechnical, third party utilities, highways, NAVCANADA properties, and others. Closeout documentation included team meetings to gather information and hold discussions regarding lessons learned. 

This project, started in 2010, then delayed due to budget considerations, was reinitiated in 2014. The design was undertaken in two phases, phase 1 was the difficult narrow section of road along the bluffs next to the Nicola Lake, phase 2 was the balance of the 18km line. A systematic risk analysis was undertaken as input in the design. All stakeholders were engaged and their input factored into the design. MCW designed and engineered special structures as push braces for structural soundness.

Professional of Record duties required regular site visits, recording of the deficiencies, producing record drawing.

    
    
    
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