The first of nine potential geothermal powerplants being developed by Reno, Nev.-based Gradient Resources will be built by McLean, Va.-based Science Applications International Corp.’s design-build subsidiary, Benham Constructors LLC. Construction of the 60-MW powerplant at Gradient’s Patua site, near Fernley, Nev., will begin the second quarter of this year, with commercial operation expected in the third quarter of 2017. No contract value was given to the engineering, procurement and construction contract for the estimated $270-million project. The Sacramento Municipal Utility District already has contracted for a portion of the plant’s production. SAIC will use TAS Energy technology for the project.
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.