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MEA Signs Power Block General Construction Contract with Haskell Corporation

Palmer, AK – In a significant milestone for its Eklutna Generation Station (EGS) project, on Tuesday, Matanuska Electric Association signed a major contract with Haskell Corporation for general construction of the Power Block portion of the plant. The Power Block is generally defined as the engine hall (the structure housing the engines and generators) and related infrastructure. In all, the contract is valued at $102.8 million, and marks the second-largest contract signed by MEA in pursuit of the EGS project.

Haskell Corporation brings with it an impressive list of accomplishments qualifying it for the work at EGS. The company has experience with Wärtsilä engines similar to those en route to Alaska for delivery this fall to drive the Eklutna Generation Station. Additionally, Haskell has recently worked on large-scale projects for Eielson Air Force Base in Fairbanks and Golden Valley Electric Association’s North Pole plant.

Haskell Corporation has been in business since 1890, with its first Alaska project in 1949. Since that time Haskell has been a fixture in the Alaskan construction market. One of the hallmarks of Haskell’s construction approach is to hire local subcontractors whenever possible, thereby increasing local economic impact for major construction projects. Their work on EGS is no exception, with an impressive list of subcontractors already on-board for much of the work. A few of the major subcontractors include Roger Hickel Contracting, Alcan Electric, PCI, H&K Metal, Norcoast Plumbing, Accel, Swalling Construction, and DAMA Industrial. The use of Alaskan labor is anticipated to be particularly substantial on this project due to the scope of work – which includes construction of the Power block building, site civil work, equipment enclosures, piping, electrical, radiators, stacks, pilings, etc.

The signing of this contract marks the beginning of a new phase of construction for the EGS project,” said MEA General Manager Joe Griffith. “This spring, the foundation was completed on-schedule and on budget. Over 850 truckloads of concrete and 1.5 million pounds of rebar were used by foundation contractor Roger Hickel Contracting to get the site ready for this phase of construction, and we congratulate them on a job well done.”

When the Eklutna Generation Station comes online, it will mark the end of the longstanding all-requirements contract in which MEA has purchased power for its members from fellow electrical cooperative Chugach Electric Association. EGS will produce up to 170 megawatts of power for the members of Alaska’s oldest and second-largest electrical cooperative.

Matanuska Electric Association, Inc., Alaska’s oldest and second-largest electric cooperative, is owned and operated by its members. Covering more than 4,000 miles of power lines, MEA’s service area extends north past Talkeetna, over to the mighty Matanuska Glacier, and south to Eagle River. MEA was founded in 1941 by 201 colonist families, and celebrates 72 years of service in 2013 with nearly 58,000 points of service.

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