Environmental Design of Bear Swamp Project

by Robert W. Kwiatkowski, (M.ASCE), Assoc.; Chas. T. Main, Inc., Boston, MA,
Louis D. Pierce, Chf. Civ. Engr.; New England Power Service Co., Westboro, MA,

Serial Information: Journal of the Power Division, 1973, Vol. 99, Issue 1, Pg. 205-215

Document Type: Journal Paper


The civil engineering design of the Bear Swamp pumped storage hydroelectric project required cognizance of the effect upon environment along each stage of the major design decisions. Final configurations and treatment of reservoir slopes, borrow areas, surface features and recreational facilities took into account the impact of cost as well as potential detrimental effect upon both the immediate and the areal vicinity. After a brief project description, selection of the underground powerhouse is explained followed by a description of the considerations behind the location and procedure for the exploratory adit. Details aimed at preventing any future oil contamination of the reservoir by transformer accident are illustrated. The exterior architectural treatment of the two small power plants, which are integral parts of the project, is related to the environment from the standpoint of blending into the surroundings. Finally, the effect upon the Deerfield River and construction limitations are touched upon.

Subject Headings: Power plants | Environmental issues | Sustainable development | Wetlands (fresh water) | Reservoirs | Waste storage | Water storage | Energy storage

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