ABB has completed the upgrade and refurbishment of the three high voltage direct current (HVDC) converter stations on the power transmission link that delivers hydropower from Québec, Canada to New England, US.The upgrade of the world’s first multi-terminal link was completed for utilities Hydro-Québec and National Grid. The 1,500km link originally entered service in the early 1990s, and has provided the highly populated areas of Montreal and Boston with hydropower. With a total capacity of 2,000MW, the link can provide enough hydro-electricity for 3.8M people, based on average US household consumption.A critical part of the project has been ensuring minimal power interference and enabling commercial operation to be restored swiftly. As part of this latest upgrade, ABB has replaced the link’s hardware and software with its state-of-the-art MACH control and protection system. This ensures a continued, reliable and highly controllable power supply and enables advanced smart-grid studies for further grid optimisation in a timely manner, the company said.Patrick Fragman, managing director of ABB’s Grid systems business, said: “We pioneered HVDC technology and continue to lead the way through innovation, as with the latest control system being installed for this project. “The upgrade of the world’s first multi-terminal link reinforces ABB’s commitment to supporting customers through the lifecycle, and reiterates our focus on the service business, as part of our Next Level Strategy.”
FedEx subsidiary FedEx Ground has started construction on a $228M distribution centre in Northampton County in Pennsylvania.The company has acquired a 253-acre site in Allen Township, Northampton County and is now building a 74,000sq m distribution centre and related structures as part of a new Mid-Atlantic hub.Pennsylvania’s governor Tom Wolf said: “This project is a huge win for Pennsylvania. The FedEx Ground terminal will become the company’s largest warehouse and logistics hub among the 34 it operates nationwide.“The fact that FedEx chose Pennsylvania over two other states to expand, is a testament not only to the commonwealth’s business-friendly atmosphere, but also our strong local workforce.”The project will create 282 full-time jobs over the next three years and 398 permanent part-time jobs.Furthermore, the firm is anticipated to retain 1,652 existing employees across the state. The development is scheduled to open in 2018.
Williams Partners has secured an approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for the Dalton Expansion project in northwest Georgia, USA.The project has been designed to deliver natural gas to an existing electric generating facility operated by Oglethorpe Power, Atlanta Gas Light, and the city of Cartersville.The development will include the construction of 185km of new steel pipe, ranging from 16-30 inches in diameter, from the existing Transco pipeline in Coweta County to new delivery points in Paulding and Murray Counties.The pipeline is being designed to transport about 448,000Dth of natural gas daily.Furthermore, the company is proposing to construct a new compressor facility in Carroll County, along with three new metering facilities and other related pipe and valve modifications to existing facilities.Rory Miller, senior vice president of Williams Partners’ Atlantic-Gulf operating area, said: “The Dalton Expansion Project is one of several Transco projects creating much-needed access to northern natural gas supplies to meet growing demand in the South, particularly in the power-generation sector.”Work on the expansion project is scheduled to commence in the third quarter of 2016 with completion aimed for 2017.The project is part of the company’s 2016 growth capital funding plan, which includes $1.3bn for Transco expansions and other interstate pipeline projects.
Holliday Fenoglio Fowler (HFF) has secured $156M in financing for the construction of a residential project in Jersey City, New Jersey.HFF has secured the construction loan on behalf of Ironstate Development and Panepinto Properties. The project, known as 90 Columbus, will include 539 housing units and is located at the corner of Marin Boulevard and Steuben Street in Jersey City’s Grove Street District.The 50-storey, Class A apartment tower will feature studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom luxury residences averaging 73sq m each.The development will also include a swimming pool, grilling areas, indoor and outdoor children’s play areas, dog run, sport court, table tennis room, library and Wi-Fi lounges.The project is scheduled to be complete in 18 months.90 Columbus is part of a multi-phase development, which also includes the 400-unit building called 50 Columbus; the 50-storey, luxury residential tower 70 Columbus; the soon-to-be-completed, 152-room Marriott Residence Inn at 80 Columbus; and on-site shared parking.
Construction firm Skanska has been awarded a $178M contract to build a new women and children’s healthcare facility in Newark, Delaware.The eight-storey, 36,000 sq m building — awarded by Christiana Care Health System — will include a replacement to the neonatal intensive-care unit, and the expansion of the outpatient units, lab, pharmacy, and dietary clinical and logistical support services.Skanska was previously awarded a contract to expand the facility’s four-level parking garage for patients and visitors.Construction on the project is in progress and its completion is scheduled for January 2020.
Vinci Construction Grands Projets in a joint venture with EMCC and Jan de Nul has secured a $147M contract to extend the port of Kingston in Jamaica.Under the contract, awarded by shipping group CMA CGM, the JV will be responsible for the refurbishment, reinforcement and upgrade of 1,200m of quays to seismic standards.Furthermore, dredging work in the access channel will be carried out. The project is expected to increase the alongside depth of the quays to enable them to handle container ships of larger capacity. According to Vinci, the port of Kingston — located near the Panama Canal at the crossroads between the North/South and East/West sea lanes — will become one of the three main container terminals in the Caribbean.Work on the project will be completed in 25 months.
TransCanada, Sierra Oil & Gas and Grupo TMM have unveiled plans to develop a new refined products storage and transportation infrastructure system in Central Mexico.The $800M project will include the construction of a marine terminal near Tuxpan, Veracruz for offloading and distribution of refined products, a 265km refined products pipeline, and an inland storage and distribution hub.With a draft of 42ft, the marine terminal will feature four docking positions. The terminal will be pipeline-connected to key distribution centres in the region and will offer racks for truck loading and barge access to service the demand of other ports in the Gulf Coast.The pipeline, with an approximate daily capacity of 100,000 barrels of refined products, will run parallel to TransCanada's recently awarded Tuxpan-Tula natural gas pipeline project.
McCarthy Building Companies has started construction work on a $535M hospital replacement project for Marin General Hospital in San Rafael, California.The project, known as MGH 2.0, will include a new 24,000sq m, four-storey hospital building.The facility, designed by Perkins Eastman Architects, will house 114 private rooms, an expanded emergency department and six new operating/procedural suites.The development will include special amenities and landscape features, such as rooftop gardens, balconies, and natural light in every patient room.Once the new hospital towers open in 2020, work will commence on a 9,000sq m five-storey ambulatory services building, and parking structure.The project team has just completed MGH 2.0’s first parking facility.The hospital will continue to operate during the construction period.
Holliday Fenoglio Fowler (HFF) has secured a $233.3M construction loan from the Bank of the Ozarks for the development of an office tower in Chicago, Illinois.HFF worked on behalf of the developer, The John Buck Company, to place the construction loan with the bank.The Class A+, 35-storey building — located at 151 North Franklin in Chicago’s West Loop — will be the new world headquarters of insurance firm CNA, as well as the new national headquarters of international law firm Hinshaw & Culbertson. Upon completion, the tower will feature 75,000sq m of rentable space and an attached parking garage, in addition to the 34 lower-level parking stalls. The building will also include a 390sq m rooftop terrace with bar, 929sq m of landscaped exterior courtyards, a fitness centre, 250-seat conference centre, restaurant, bike room and café.Designed by John Ronan Architects and Adamson Associates, the LEED Gold-certified building is currently under construction and will be completed in mid-2018.
Alliant Energy is set to invest about $1bn to expand its wind energy operations in Iowa, USA.The company’s Iowa utility is seeking regulatory approval to expand its Whispering Willow Wind Farm in Franklin County and develop wind energy in other areas of the state.The five-year project will add up to 500MW of annual clean energy capacity. Alliant Energy is targeting a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions from 2005 to 2030.Doug Kopp, the company's president of Iowa utility, said: “Our customers expect low-cost, clean energy, which is exactly what this project will bring to the communities we serve.“Wind has no fuel costs and zero emissions, making it a win-win for Iowans and the Iowa economy.”The new wind project will create more than 1,500 construction jobs in the region.
US-based home improvement retailer Lowe's Companies has unveiled plans to develop a new $100M direct fulfilment centre in Robertson County, Tennessee.The 102,000sq m centre will ship parcels directly to Lowe’s customers and stores nationwide.Lowe’s chief supply chain officer Brent Kirby said: “We’re continually working to make doing business with Lowe’s easier for customers.“Investing to build a new fulfilment centre — the first of its kind for Lowe’s — allows us to offer customers more products online, consolidate multiple parcel shipments and ship purchases directly to customers faster and more efficiently.“The Nashville area was chosen due to its existing large shipping hubs, access to interstate roadways and well-skilled workforce.”Scheduled to be operational by the third quarter of 2018, the facility will initially employ about 400 people, reaching 600 by 2022.
Hillwood Communities has started construction on its new $500M master-planned community in Celina, Texas.The development — located on a 400-acre site at the northeast corner of FM 1461 and Coit Road — will include 1,250 single-family homes featuring resort-style amenities, and a linear park with an amenity centre, including a resort style pool, pavilion and outdoor kitchen.It will also feature 63 acres of green space with multiple community parks and several miles of trails.Hillwood Communities’ senior vice president Elaine Ford said: “Celina is a booming city in North Dallas, and we are excited to partner with them and local vendors to bring jobs and businesses along with more residents here.“The groundbreaking of Lilyana is an exciting step for us, and we look forward to beginning the development of a first class community for potential residents.”The first phase of the development will be completed in early 2017.
Mercedes-Benz Vans has started construction of a new $500M plant in North Charleston, South Carolina.The new plant is an expansion of the existing 409,000sq ft van assembly site, which will cover around an additional 112,000sq m along with a 260,000sq m marshalling yard for finished vehicles.Mercedes-Benz Vans’ head of operations Frank Klein said: "Our new Sprinter plant is a big leap into the future of production at Mercedes-Benz Vans. "We are combining all of our global expertise and experience in this plant. In doing so, we make it one of the most advanced facilities in North America. The plant will meet the highest standards in quality, based on our globally standardized production system — from the first vehicle that rolls off the assembly line."The facility is scheduled to commence production before the end of the decade and create 1,300 jobs in the region.
The Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Tunnel Commission has awarded a $755M contract to Dragados Team joint venture for the construction of a new parallel tunnel at the Thimble Shoal Channel.The new tunnel will be around one mile in length, and will have an outer diameter of 42ft. Construction work is set to commence in late 2017, with the renovation of the Island 1 fishing pier.
American football team Minnesota Vikings has selected the development team for its new Eagan practice facility and headquarters in Minnesota, US.The team includes Crawford Architects, which will provide design services, and Kraus-Anderson Construction Company, which will act as the construction manager of the project.The new team headquarters will feature outdoor and indoor practice fields, a 6,000-seat stadium, team meeting rooms and auditorium, a broadcast studio and media centre, and administrative offices for staff.The facility represents the first phase in an overall 200-acre planned development, which is expected to include offices, retail, residential and hospitality units and a conference centre.Vikings’ executive vice president and CFO Steve Poppen said: “We are thrilled to once again engage in a large project with a Minnesota-based construction company such as Kraus-Anderson, as they have a tremendous body of work and strong reputation within the community.“Both Crawford Architects and Kraus-Anderson have long-standing relationships with the Vikings and together give us complete confidence in designing and building this project on time for a March 2018 opening.”The project is scheduled to break ground in early August 2016. Construction work on the first phase is expected to be completed in about 20 months.
US-based Granite Construction has secured a $128M contract from the California Department of Transportation for the State Route 99 realignment project in Fresno, California. Under the contract, Granite will act as construction manager and general contractor for the project, which includes the construction of a reconfigured interchange, overhead structures and infrastructure, to accommodate the high-speed rail system between the existing freeway and the Union Pacific Railroad.The project also includes the re-routing of local streets to accommodate the realigned freeway and relocation of utilities to support the project. The California High Speed Rail Authority has provided financing for the project, which is scheduled to be complete by September 2018.
Tata Steel Minerals Canada (TSMC) has secured CAD175M ($133M) in financing from the government of Quebec, Canada to support the implementation of a direct shipping iron ore project (DSO project) in Schefferville.The financial contribution includes equity stake of CAD125M ($94.7M) through the Capital Mining Hydrocarbons Fund and a loan of $50M ($37.8M) from Investissement Québec, acting as an agent of the government.Quebec’s deputy premier Lise Thériault said: "The support for this important project confirms our commitment to stimulate the growth of the Quebec mining industry, particularly in the Northern parts of Quebec, and encourage the responsible exploitation of our resources."In addition, this project will have significant benefits for our economy, creating up to 550 quality jobs in Quebec."TSMC has invested more than CAD1bn ($758M) in the project.
EUS-Rokstad, a joint venture between Emera Utility Services and Rokstad Power, has been awarded a £86m contract by NSP Maritime Link for the construction of its Maritime Link Project in Canada.
A joint venture between Kenny Construction and Obayashi has secured a $279m contract to build the South Hartford Conveyance and Storage Tunnel (SHCST) in Hartford, Connecticut.
SapuraKencana Petroleum subsidiary SapuraKencana Mexicana has won a $113M contract for the construction of a gas pipeline in Campeche, Mexico.Under the contract, awarded by Pemex Exploración y Producción, SapuraKencana will be responsible for the procurement and construction of a 36-inch diameter, 18km-long Sour Gas Pipeline from) in Ciudad del Carmen.The scope of work includes transportation and installation of pipelines, crossings, top side modifications and subsea works, including procurement and project management.Construction work is scheduled to commence in July 2016 and will be completed by March 2017.