On April 27, Controlled Demolition Inc. (CDI) of Phoenix, Maryland, brought down two cooling towers at the Brayton Point Power Station in Somerset, Massachusetts, marking a final chapter for the state’s last coal-fired power plant.
Commercial Development Company Inc. (CDC) of St. Louis, the owner and developer of the retired power station, says the demolition of the 500-foot concrete towers set the record for the tallest cooling towers ever imploded worldwide.
Implosion of the cooling towers is the latest demo job performed at the Brayton Point Power Station as CDC clears way for development of Brayton Point Commerce Center, a logistical port and support center built to support renewable energy and the emerging U.S. offshore wind sector.
Demolition work began in September 2018 and is expected to be completed later this year. CDI recently brought down three 350-foot-tall reinforced concrete chimneys at the plant with explosives as well.
Contractors working for Brayton Point LLC, an affiliate of CDC, are currently in the process of demolishing other infrastructure on the site. Other activity has included asbestos abatement, environmental remediation, demolition permitting work and extensive redevelopment planning. As demolition in large areas is completed, those areas will be restored in preparation for new development.
Built in 1957 and commissioned in 1963, the Brayton Point Power Station was the largest coal-fired generating station in New England and was also the last coal-fired power station in Massachusetts to provide power to the regional grid. At its peak, Brayton Point had a capacity of 1,600 MW and employed over 250 full-time staff.
Construction of the concrete cooling towers, which were used to prevent heated water from entering the Mount Hope Bay, began in 2009 and cost about $620 million. After over six decades of use, the Brayton Point Power Station stopped producing power in May 2017.
The concrete rubble left from the demolition will be crushed and reused onsite in preparation for redevelopment, CDC says.
Brayton Point represents CDC’s fifth power plant purchase and reclamation project, representing 3200 MW of retired generation capacity.
The demolition began at 8 a.m. and lasted about six seconds as the charges at the base of the tower went off, sending the two towers to the ground in unison. Check out the video below: