Work resumes on northern intertie

Posted: Tuesday, January 28, 2003

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- If the weather cooperates and construction goes smoothly, the northern intertie, intended to deliver power between Fairbanks and Healy more efficiently, could be operational by October.

After a long wait for enough snowfall, Golden Valley Electric Association's contractors are working day and night to meet the goal, Golden Valley construction manager Greg Wyman said.

Work on the $69.5 million project resumed after Golden Valley received a Jan. 5 memo from the Bureau of Land Management authorizing work.

Critics have argued the intertie's construction damages vegetation.

To minimize damage from heavy equipment, the Bureau of land Management requires that the ground must be frozen to a depth of one foot and covered by a foot of snow. Those conditions exist along some areas of the route.

If there's not enough snow cover along the entire route, Golden Valley may have to wait until next winter to complete the project.

''I think, optimistically, we can do it. But everything's going to have to fall in line,'' Wyman said.

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