A 132-kilovolt substation in Fallujah, projected for completion in October, will result in more consistent and stable electricity for Fallujah residents.
The $14.8 million project is being managed by the Gulf Region Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Iraq, and funded by the Iraqi Relief and Reconstruction Fund.
The substation was damaged in a fire caused by circuit breaker failure in Jan. 2005, and was identified by the Divisionâ€™s Gulf Region District as a significant capacity-building project for Fallujah.
Maj. Joseph Geary, the officer in charge of the Districtâ€™s resident office in Fallujah, praised the team for working steadfastly on the project and overcoming various issues, including getting the equipment on site in good condition.
For example, when a transformer arrived damaged, security concerns hindered its delivery to the repair facility in another province. GRD officials and the contractor worked together to negotiate the transport and repair of the critical component. Now, in coordination with Iraqi security forces, the project is progressing along.
â€œItâ€™s a great story where the contractor, GRD and the Deputy General from the Iraqi Ministry of Electricity all worked together to move this project closer to the finish line,â€ said Geary.
The transformer is at the factory for repair and is expected to be ready in approximately 60 days. In the meantime, the contractor is continuing to work on the switching equipment and other internal components.
When the 132-kilovolt substation is complete, the Fallujah Minister of Electricity will have more latitude in managing the power grid as it relates to allocating power from area to area.
Improvements at the Fallujah substation will also provide expansion capacity with the addition of another bay and main transformer.
During its peak construction season, construction of the Fallujah substation employed
40 Iraqi workers.
The Gulf Region Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Iraq has completed thousands of reconstruction projects in partnership with the U.S. government and the government of Iraq. Since 2004, GRD has completed 4,626 projects throughout Iraq valued at more than $7.2 billion, and has 287 projects ongoing.
By Ronald A. Reeves
Gulf Region District