The Ambuklao and Binga Hydropower Plant project in the Philippines was a testament to McConnell Dowell’s capabilities in remote area construction, the development recieving a silver award for the “Best Renewable Energy Power Plant of the Year” in the 2011 Asian Power Awards.
The project involved the refurbishment of the two 40 year old plants that had become compromised by siltation and volcanic activity. Construction encompassed a network of tunnels and shafts and the building of new intake and outlet structures. The plants were equipped with new electrical and mechanical equipment, as well as new generators. A complete new cooling system with pipes, pumps and filter, as well as new drain system, new spherical valves, runners and shafts were installed, and new bulkheads were incorporated to maintain the spillway gates.
The isolated location of the project posed logistical challenges, with the mountainous terrain restricting accessibility and communication. The area is also prone to volcanic activity, heavy rain and landslides.
The project was completed successfully on the 1st of June 2011.