Project status archive

Below are the previous updates for the Station E substation project.

February 2020 Update

Site construction is going well. Shown below are many of the piers, steel structures and yard electrical equipment in place. Crews will soon begin the electrical interconnections throughout the yard and to the control building.

Construction continues on the approximately 10,000 square foot, 2-story Control Building. Completion of the exterior is scheduled for mid-March. Once the building is weather tight and HVAC is operational, equipment installation can begin. Below are pictures of the structural steel for the roofing and panels being installed.


Yard electrical buss and wiring continues, including installation of insulators, switches and associated equipment.


Other Items:

  • Underground civil construction work continues near the UPRR tracks.
  • We're continuing to work 6 days a week (Monday-Saturdays). Construction is scheduled to complete in Spring 2021.

September 2019 update

The project continues moving forward, the main focus continues on preparation of the site for winter rains. The primary work planned now and into October/November consists of completing the following:

  • Construction of remaining piers (currently 70% complete) and installation of steel structures. Much of the steel is on site and several structures were erected the week of 9-9-19 as shown below.

Picture of station E progress, bulldozers and tractors

  • Construction continues with the ~10,000 sqft, 2 story Control Building. The completion of the shell is a key component to allowing work to continue during the rains. We anticipate going to 6 days per week work (adding Saturdays) for the next few months. The picture below shows scaffolding in-place and block wall being installed by skilled masons. 

Picture of station E construction progress

Other Items: 

  • Preparation for underground work near the UPRR tracks began.
  • Transformer pad foundations are under construction in preparation for the move in of several transformers. These transformers are planned to move to the site in late October.
  • Additionally, over 32,000 lbs of aggregate base rock will be placed, to bring the site to “near final grade” before the rains. Much of this material is planned to be sourced from Bell Marine’s site to minimize traffic in the neighborhood.

July (Mid) 2019 update

Our contractors are planning to pour the Control Building foundation on July 18. Work is planned to begin at midnight and conclude approximately at 7 AM. Due to the size of this concrete pour and the extreme heat during the day, it is important that the work be completed during off-hours (nighttime). We anticipate a total of 500 cubic yards of concrete delivered in 50 trucks during this portion of the work.

We apologize in advance for any inconvenience and appreciate your cooperation with us.

Foundation preparation work at Station E

Foundation preparation work

July 2019 update

Summer focus is mainly on Civil construction to get the site ready for winter rains.  This will continue through October and consists of:

  • Installing >200 structural piers (largest are up to 6’ diameter and 20’ deep)
  • Excavations and construction of below grade conduits for the miles of electrical cables
  • Construction of >100 electrical equipment foundations that lead to our 10,000 square foot control building
  • Completion of the site drainage system

All this work is planned to be significantly completed before the rains in the fall of 2019, including the roof of the control building and installation of an aggregate base layer of rock, that will allow us to continue construction through the rains.

Pier foundation  Building foundation  Conduit to pad 
Building a pier foundation at Station E  Building foundation image at Station E  Conduit to pad image at Station E 
Pier foundation  Cable trench  Site drainage 
Pier foundation image at Station E  Cable trench image at Station E  Site drainage image at Station E 

Construction status: 9/24/18

Phase 1B-Excavation & removal of waste materials

Our environmental clean-up effort that began in the Spring of 2018 is planned to be completed in the next 5 weeks. The project removed the planned amount of contaminated materials which were then backfilled with clean soil in preparation for the substation construction. Our contractor will be preparing the site for winter rains and we will suspend work on site in October until Phase 2 (substation construction) begins.

Photo of substation E site during excavation with bulldozer in the background.
August 2018 - Excavation (removal of soil)
Wide view of substation E site during backfilling
September 2018 - Backfill (clean soil placement)

Phase 2 - Substation construction

Bids for the substation construction were received and are currently being evaluated. We plan to award this contract in early 2019. After the contract is awarded, we'll schedule an additional meeting with the community to update you on the Phase 2 plans and answer any questions you may have.

Additionally, we'll be completing cap construction on the portion of the site where excavation did not take place. No substation construction work is planned to occur in this portion during Phase 2. The cap will cover the ground to prevent any potential waste that may remain in these areas from being uncovered.

Phase 1B construction status: 8/8/18

Construction has been underway for just over 100 days, mainly focused on excavation and removal of waste materials. Project excavation is nearly 90% complete and progressing well.  Contaminated/non-suitable material removed from the site to date is approximately 15,000 cubic yards and broken down by class below:

Material Type

Cubic Yards

Number of Truckloads

Class I



Class II



Backfill and additional materials using haul route

With the excavation nearing completion, we'll begin importing 45,000 cubic yards from Bell Marine, using internal roads we connected between the two locations. After the Bell Marine material is exhausted, we'll import from another local source less than 2 miles away. The import from the second source is anticipated to begin at the end of August and continue for approximately 18 working days.

We anticipate utilizing approximately 20 trucks per day, making 10 trips each for this final soil import. We have estimated an additional 60,000 cubic yards of soil is needed to bring this phase of the project to grade.  These trucks will utilize the designated haul route as planned. 

Phase 1B construction status: 7/16/18

The project excavation is over 40% complete and progressing well. Approximately 11,300 cubic yards of contaminated material has been removed from the site to date, broken down by class below:

Material Type

Cubic Yards

Number of Truckloads

Class I



Class II



The project excavation will continue as planned with stockpiling, testing and segregating materials for removal or reuse at the site. Materials suitable for reuse are being placed back and re-compacted to meet the geotechnical requirements of the site. So far we've reused 57,995 cubic yards.

 Phase 1B construction status: 6/21/18

Site excavations and operations continue daily as planned. Contaminated material removal from the site to date is approximately 460 truckloads.

Site haul off has not occurred since 6/11/18, as the contractor is currently focusing on reuse of stockpiled soils that have been screened, tested and cleared for reuse at the site. These stockpiled materials are being placed back and re-compacted to meet the geotechnical requirements of the site.

Additional haul off will begin again as reuse is placed and further excavations occur.

Phase 1B construction status: 5/31/18

Site excavations and operations, including the off-haul of materials, continue daily as planned. Materials on the site continue to be screened, cleared of debris, categorized and tested for potential reuse. To date we have removed 500 tons of material from the site in 190 truckloads, operating about 20 trucks daily in the removal process.

Phase 1B construction status: 5/16/18

Shoring installation has progressed well and should complete by this Friday, ahead of the schedule. Site excavations and operations, including off-haul of materials, continue daily as planned. We are currently operating about 20 trucks daily. 

The contractor will suspend operations for the Memorial Day holiday starting early afternoon on Friday, May 25 and plan to resume work on Wednesday, May 30.

Phase 1B construction status: 5/7/18

SMUD crews are working with our construction contractor near the existing substation to prepare for the installation of shoring, which is used to support the vertical faces of the excavation areas near the existing infrastructure. Expect moderate vibration from the heavy equipment installing the shoring from 7 AM to 5:30 PM Monday-Friday and possibly Saturdays from 8 AM - 4 PM. Shoring materials start arriving 5/7/18 and continue through the week. The installation is expected to last through the end of May.

Phase 1B construction status: 4/27/18

SMUD’s contractor, Cape Environmental has mobilized to the job site and is preparing to start to construction activities April 30, 2018. Excavation and off-site hauling activities will begin in May and continue through August.  Backfilling and grading with clean soil will begin in May and continue through September. This phase of construction is currently planned to be complete in October.