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February 23, 2023 • Robyn Smith, EWEB Communications
The Currin substation near Garden Way and 105, was constructed in 1962 and is considered the “Grand Central Station” of EWEB’s electrical grid. A lot of power flows through this station. It feeds power from BPA and Pacific Corp. transmission lines to EWEB’s grid, connects power upriver to the Hayden Bridge filtration plant and to Eugene’s downtown electrical network. But, “Grand Central” is about to get a big makeover.
For the past year, EWEB’s electric division has been preparing for a complete reconstruction of the Currin substation. Quite simply, it’s reached the end of its useful life.
“We’ve discovered more and more failures in this substation over the years and the overall design of the station does not meet modern expectations,” said Philip Peterson, EWEB systems engineer.
Since the early 2000s, systematic upgrades to substation equipment have made operation of the 60-year-old station difficult as old and new equipment is unable to work together. Rebuilding the Currin substation will increase load capacity to ensure we meet future needs and improve reliability by avoiding outages due to equipment failure or routine maintenance.
While Currin is decommissioned, power will continue to flow from other substations that can easily handle the load and demand until Currin has been fully reconstructed, most likely by spring of 2024.
Erosion control construction on the site to mitigate construction debris is just finishing up and over the next few weeks, crews will begin demolition and removal of the aging infrastructure.
Currin is just the first of several substations scheduled for a rebuild over the next ten years as part of EWEB’s major infrastructure investments through our Capital Improvement Plan for rehabilitating, replacing, and installing new infrastructure.
The electricity we all rely on would not be possible without the infrastructure that delivers it.
From power plants to distribution and transmission lines, substations, and transformers — utility infrastructure is a complex system that requires investment and maintenance to provide constant, reliable power.
Visit eweb.org/rateinfo to learn more about what goes into your EWEB rates and what you get for your money.
Pictured above: Erosion control fence installed at the Currin construction site.
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