The New York Power Authority announced Thursday it has awarded a $16 million contract for nine years of work on underwater structures at the Niagara Power Project in Lewiston.
BVR Construction of Churchville will work until 2027 on head gates and stop log rails, which are used to isolate the chambers of the project's 13 turbine generating units. They block the water flow to allow periodic turbine generator overhauls and other maintenance work.
After underwater inspections revealed deterioration of both types of mechanical structures, NYPA began working on the head gates in 2011 and started rehabilitating the log rails last year. In both cases, the structures are receiving their first complete refurbishing since the plant opened in 1961, a NYPA spokeswoman said.
Counting previous costs of the work, the project is budgeted at $21.8 million.
Last month, NYPA carried out an underwater inspection of the tunnels that carry water to the plant from the upper Niagara River.