PEABODY — The Peabody Municipal Light Plant’s (PMLP) $13 million Ipswich River Substation has been completed.
The project, which began in June2018, will deliver electricity to more than 5,000 households in West Peabody. It also has the capability to serve other sections of the system as needed.
“The substation will provide additional capacity and improve reliability for all of PMLP customers, allowing for new usages of electricity,” commissioner Charles Bonfanti said in a statement.
The five-member board oversees PMLP, the community-owned, nonprofit utility company serving the residents of Peabody and South Lynnfield.
Electricity is received at the substation from ISO New England, a Holyoke-based nonprofit Regional Transmission Organization that serves the six New England states, and delivers power throughout Peabody and South Lynnfield in the PMLP distribution wires that are usually atop utility poles.
The substation is one of six interconnected facilities owned by PMLP, allowing for the re-routing of power in emergency situations.
The project included hauling in 10,000 cubic yards of fill to raise the station above the flood line. Once the new equipment was partially operational, the former station was decommissioned and demolished, and the land was restored to its natural wetland condition.
Now fully operational, the substation access road is shared by the PMLP and Department of Public Services Water Department. It also serves as part of the city’s bike path, which was unavailable at times during construction.
“With hundreds of trucks needing access to the worksite, closing the path was necessary for public safety,” said Charles Orphanos, plant manager. “We appreciated everyone’s support and understanding.”
Thomas Paras, commission chairman, praised the PMLP team for their work on the project.
“Hundreds of people worked together to complete this multi-year project that will benefit the ratepayers of the PMLP for many years to come,” he said.
The ribbon cutting was held on October 30. An open house for city officials will be announced soon.