Benton Utilities has purchased what will be the first city-owned transmission and distribution transformer in its history.
The transformer, which has a capacity of 30 megawatts, is scheduled to be delivered Monday morning to what is to become Benton West Substation on Dale Avenue, according to Terry McKinney, general manager of Benton Utilities.
The total estimated cost of the new Benton West Substation reportedly is $3.8 million.
McKinney noted that said the purchase of the transformer will enable Benton Utilities to meet both the current and future needs of customers as the city experiences westward growth.
He pointed out that in 2012 the City Council approved the city’s expansion of electrical power usage via Benton West Substation with the majority of the project being funded by the year's bond proceeds.
"The Benton Public Utilities Commission foresaw this need due to the present capacity load approaching 90 percent, nearly maxing out the current substations owned by Entergy," McKinney said.
Those substations are North Benton, Alcoa Benton and the South Benton Substations.
"At 8 a.m. Monday the city of Benton will have the oil-filled medium power transformer, priced at $609,642, delivered on a specialized trailer brought in from Ellisville, Miss., where it was manufactured by Howard Industries Inc.," he said.
He said the "bare unit" weighs 88,000 pounds, with the addition of the 8,035 gallons of oil on the pad mount bringing the total weight to 157,615 pounds.
Dick Mooney Crane Rentals of Benton will be there to position the unit on the mount, McKinney said.
The substation will be energized and ready for operation in mid-October of this year, he added.
The location is across the street from the Benton Utilities Service Center on Dale Avenue.