The last milestone in the near $20 million project to increase capacity at Transpower’s Kaitimako substation in the Bay of Plenty was completed last month when the final outage needed to replace equipment was successfully undertaken.
The objective of the project has been to get higher transmission capacity closer to where it will be needed in the future – mainly the growing population areas of Tauranga and Mount Maunganui which are expected to grow over 30% over the next twenty years.
Technically this has meant: converting a line operating at 110 kV to its designed 220 kV capacity and installing new 220/110 kV transformers at Kaitimako to connect to the higher capacity line.
Funding approval was obtained from our regulator (then Electricity Commission) at the end of 2009, and following handover of the internal business case to Grid Projects, the project began construction in late 2010.
Project Manager for the day-to-day on-site construction, Colin Boggiss, was pleased the project delivered ahead of schedule and under budget.
“Good projects result from having good people and good coordination between them. This project in particular involved civil, substations, lines, and protection works all needed over the two and a half years plus inputs at the beginning by way of design, and throughout the project by way of timely equipment procurement”
With the work completed, Kaitimako substation now has a capacity 66% more than it did originally meaning it is capable of supporting the future electricity needs of Western Bay of Plenty consumers well into the 2020s.