Posted Jul. 22, 2016 at 8:42 PM
Updated Jul 22, 2016 at 11:58 PM
CITY OF NEWBURGH — Two humble tree stumps are blocking the path of a load of multi-ton steam generators destined for the $900 million power plant under construction in the Town of Wawayanda.
On Friday, a large yellow crane helped to offload a shipment of “heat recovery steam generators” from a barge at Steelways, Inc. on Water Street in the City of Newburgh.
The crane placed the massive load onto a carrier about 90 feet long with 18 rows of wheels.
But the trip from the shores of the Hudson River to Competitive Power Ventures’ Valley Energy Center’s construction site in Wawayanda hit a snag … or a stump.
David Plotkin, president of Steelways, Inc., said workers are ready to move the shipment, but they first need permission from the City of Newburgh to cross Water Street.
Plotkin said in order to move the generators, they need to back the truck into a lot Steelways owns across the street from the dock. Plotkin said the lot had been fallow for some time and two trees had grow there.
They cut the trees down, but Plotkin said the city engineer stopped them this week from buzz-sawing the stumps down to ground height, telling them they need a new site plan approval to remove the stumps and safely haul the generators away. With the stumps still there, the truck can’t back out and leave, Plotkin said.
Plotkin said City Manager Michael Ciaravino has been working hard with Steelways to resolve the issue so that it won’t linger until the next City Council meeting. But he needs to get permission from the city’s engineer, fire and police departments and building inspector first.
“The city manager has been cooperative,” Plotkin said. “We’re caught up in the city’s bureaucracy.”
Several calls to the city engineer and city manager Friday were not returned in time for publication.
Danny Cain, a safety and risk manager with Edwards Moving and Rigging, said his company is in charge of shipping 20 of the massive generators and two steam drums to Wawayanda. Each generator weighs between 113,000 and 230,000 pounds.
“They must be delivered in a sequential order to the plant due to the fact that they will be aligned and connected to each other once they arrive,” Cain said.
CPV’s 650-megawatt, natural gas-fired power plant is expected to begin operation in February 2018. CPV’s environmental impact statement for the plant says each steam generator will take in exhaust heat from two combustion turbines to produce steam that will drive a steam turbine.
But until the city gives the go-ahead on a new site plan, the generators aren’t going anywhere, Plotkin says.
“We’re waiting for permission to cross Water Street,” Plotkin said. “We’d like to have one truck moved by Saturday morning.”