Marr Scaffold Provides Access Equipment at Vineyard Wind Project
In the fall of 2022 Marr’s Scaffold Division began work for various contractors on the Vineyard Wind project, an offshore windfarm under construction over 15 nautical miles off the coast of Massachusetts. This multi-year endeavor is the nation’s first utility-scale offshore wind energy project, which will consist of 62 wind turbines that will generate 800 megawatts of electricity annually and power over 400,000 homes. Vineyard Wind is expected to generate clean, renewable, affordable energy across the state and reduce carbon emissions by over 1.6 million tons per year, according to the project website.
Marr’s work started in the Port of Providence for Ocean State Technical Services, preparing mechanical equipment and making ship repairs for the cable pulling operation in Centerville, MA. Marr built a temporary mobile containment structure comprised of Sectional scaffold and Monarflex tarping to provide weather protection for welding pieces of equipment for the cable pulling operation. Marr also installed three suspended System scaffold work platforms over the side of the Ulisse, the cable-laying ship, for maintenance on the cable winches prior to pulling the first of two submarine cables onto shore.
For contractor Prysmian Cable Group (Milan, Italy), Marr installed Systems scaffolding support platforms and bracing inside a trench spanning approximately 185 ft., which had been dug to bring the cables onshore. The cables weigh 67 lbs./ft. each and run 38 miles from the site of the offshore windfarm to the beachhead on Cape Cod. The operation required eight vessels in total, including the Ulisse and multiple tugboats. The first cable was pulled onshore in November and the second in January.
For contractor Riggs Distler (Rocky Hill, CT), who will assemble the onshore windfarm components, Marr is supplying multiple work platforms, temporary guardrail systems and stair access towers. In addition, Marr has supplied 16 weather-enclosed, cantilevered and counterweighted rolling towers for welding operations along with a large Systems scaffold work platform. The platform will give workers access to the interior components of the upper wind turbines; it will function as a mock-up for work that will need to be completed during the offshore installation of the wind turbines. Along with the staging, Marr is supplying a significant amount of engineering for various phases of the project.
The onshore assembly of windfarm components is slated to take a minimum of one year to complete while the offshore work is slated to begin later this month. The following turbine installation will begin in the summer of 2023 and continue at least through the middle of 2024.