Keeyask project may start production early

The director of the Keeyask hydroelectric dam project said in a company newsletter that it could be finished by fall 2020 – almost a year ahead of the current schedule.

In the Summer 2018 Keeyask Project Manager Update, published and produced by Manitoba Hydro, project director Dave Bowen stated that increased concrete placement and productivity from the generating station project’s winter work program are the reasons for the changed forecast.

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While the project may end up being finished ahead of its planned completion date, whether or not it will be on budget is still unclear. Efforts to finish the project under the current control budget of $8.7 billion are ongoing.

“Even with the schedule improvement, we need a further 10 per cent improvement across the board by...our general civil contractor and no major risks to materialize if we are going to keep the control budget,” states Bowen in the report.

Another report released in Dec. 2017, financed by Manitoba Hydro and the Manitoba Public Utilities Board and issued by MGF Project Services, stated the project’s final costs could increase to “the $9.5 billion to $10.5 billion range” and that the project could be delayed to as late as Nov. 2022.

Work slated for the project throughout the rest of 2018 includes completion of river diversion and spillway work, powerhouse unit construction and the pouring of more than 100,000 cubic metres of concrete.

Construction on the generating station project, located on the Nelson River near Gillam, has included labourers from around the province, including workers from Flin Flon and surrounding areas.

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