By Anthony Capkun
July 29, 2013 – The Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) is moving into the next stage of selecting a successful proponent for the Fort McMurray West 500kV Transmission Project, adding it will be the first project in Alberta to use the Competitive Process.
“We’ve had 30 organizations indicate they are interested in the next phase of the process, the Request for Qualifications (RFQ) stage,” said Elizabeth Moore, director of the Competitive Process. “It’s been very gratifying to have companies from across Alberta, all over Canada and around the world, express interest in the project.”
The RFQ stage will conclude in December 2013 when an AESO-selected panel of experts will shortlist up to five bidders to move to the Request for Proposals (RFP) stage. AESO expects a winning proponent will be named by the end of 2014.
“At the end of the day, the proponent who can deliver the project at the lowest cost, while ensuring high quality and meeting all industry standards in construction, safety and ongoing operations maintenance will be identified and awarded the opportunity to develop, design, build, finance, own, operate and maintain this major transmission facility,” added Moore.
The Fort McMurray West 500kV Transmission Project is needed to support continued oil sands growth, says AESO. It will consist of about 500 kilometres of transmission line and associated facilities between the Edmonton and Fort McMurray regions, and is expected to be in service by 2019.
A second competition for the Fort McMurray East 500kV Transmission Project is expected to commence in 2015/2016.