Terri-Jane Yuzda

Careful Contract Packaging
Keeps GP3 Costs in Line

Related Article: All They Are Saying is Give Coal a Chance

In constructing the Genesee Phase 3 Generating Station, EPCOR is taking seriously the idea of spreading the load.

Well aware of recent troublesome cost overruns on other major Alberta projects, EPCOR, along with its technical services contractor Colt Engineering Corporation, took deliberate steps to prevent GP3 from enduring a similar fate.

The heart of the project, the power island and supercritical boiler, were let to Hitachi Canada Ltd. under a fixed, lump sum contract. On the balance of the plant, EPCOR, working through Colt, carefully divided the project into about 20 manageable packages. None was valued at more than $30 million.

While that meant challenges in terms of co-ordination, project manager Al Pettican, P.Eng., also points to advantages. By carefully defining the scope and tasks, it was easier to research and identify a number of well-qualified potential bidders suited for specific contracts.

"You structure it to get the right sized-company," Mr. Pettican explains. "Once you've got the right-sized company ¾ there are probably three out there ¾ you tell them they're bidding against two others, so they put a proper bid together for you."

In a number of design and engineering areas, Colt determined that it had the in-house capability to do the job. In other instances, it sought help. For the balance-of-plant facilities, that resulted in a subcontractor line-up that includes:

  • Voice Construction Ltd. ¾ site preparation and cold-water piping installation
  • AGRA Foundation Ltd. ¾ pilings
  • LaFarge Canada Inc. ¾ supply of cold-water piping
  • Hamon Custodis-Cottrell (Canada) Inc. ¾ boiler stack
  • Bird Construction Company ¾ general civil construction, including foundations for the structure, breakers, transformers and external flood lighting
  • Laird Electric ¾ general electrical switchyard and transformer bays, and balance of plant.

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