Cape Wind, the estimated $1-billion offshore wind farm planned for Nantucket Sound off the Massachusetts coast, cleared a major hurdle on Aug. 30. The state supreme court upheld a state board’s approval for an underground and undersea transmission line between the project’s 130 proposed turbines and the regional power grid. Cape Wind, set to generate 420 MW of power, had federal approval to build, but its 18.4-mile power line required state siting approval. The 4-2 decision effectively upheld the state board’s ability to overrule local authorities, which had denied Cape Wind’s permit request.
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.