Barriere Construction was tasked with demolishing and rebuilding a defunct 230-kV electrical substation for Entergy Services in New Orleans because of the increased power demand from the city's new BioDistrict. The substation had been offline since being flooded during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Photo courtesy of Barriere Construction
Entergy Midtown 230-kV Substation Demolition and Rebuild

The project's location and compact 350-ft by 350-ft site required schedule adjustments and careful planning. For example, the construction team created planning tools specifically for the structural-steel demolition to ensure that the crews were far enough ahead so that the concrete demolition team could work concurrently.

The aggressively scheduled project started in March 2013 and finished in September 2013 with Barriere self-performing 87% of the 15,200 total man-hours of work. Crews had a buffer zone between them as well, and each site was marked off with flags and barricades.

While excavating, Barriere encountered the debris from numerous old buildings, many of them not included in the site plans, which dated to the 1940s. Barriere and its subcontractors drove 520 60-ft timber and 21 70-ft precast concrete piles to support the new foundation, placed a prefabricated control house 11 ft above ground to prevent future flooding and built 170 concrete foundations. A large scope change also added a 708-ft concrete retaining wall.

Barriere completed the project with less than half a percent of rework, well below industry standards. The project required great detail in grading to allow for subsurface drainage and to add the prefabricated control room onto the pilings without any rework. Once Barriere's work was compete, Entergy's own crews finished constructing the electrical portions of the substation, also without any rework.

Key Players

General Contractor Barriere Construction, Metairie, La.

Owner Entergy Services, New Orleans

Lead Design Entergy Services, New Orleans