With a vision to provide cleaner, cost-effective, and reliable power, Old Dominion Electric Cooperative (ODEC) constructed the Wildcat Point Generation Facility (WPGF). The $800 million combined-cycle natural gas-fired power plant would be able to generate enough electricity to power 390,000 homes annually. ODEC enlisted Schnabel to perform geotechnical engineering services on key components of the project.

Founded in 1948, Old Dominion Electric Cooperative is a not-for-profit provider of wholesale electricity to 11 cooperatives serving over a million members. ODEC first engaged us to perform a geotechnical study of a five-mile pipeline and pump house that conveys WPGF’s water supply from the Susquehanna River, originating at its Peach Bottom plant in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Upon completion, the owner enlisted us to provide observation, testing, and geotechnical instrumentation and monitoring during construction.

To help ODEC allocate and manage risks associated with subsurface construction, we prepared a geotechnical baseline report. It described conditions for the excavation of the wet-well shaft and trenchless installation of the pipeline into the river. It also addressed various scenarios, including mixed-face tunneling, differential weathering at the soil/rock interface, and tunneling beneath live railroad tracks. We submitted a geotechnical engineering report that detailed the findings of our extensive subsurface investigation and provided recommendations for design and construction issues ranging from excavation and earthwork to foundations and slope stabilization.

Working with the design team and contractor during construction, we consulted on geotechnical issues that arose, reviewed contractor submittals, and performed material testing. Our recommendation to use on-site excavated rock materials as fill for roadway embankment construction, in lieu of imported fill soils, reduced construction time and saved money.