News and Events
The Utility began the installation of a 50,000 PPH package boiler in 2021. After the first full season of use, the boiler worked so well that we decided to add an identical second unit to distribute steam to our district. These new boilers utilize the newest technologies to make steam. They each have an operating range of 5,000 PPH on the low end and 50,000 PPH on the high end. These boilers produce 50# steam directly into our core steam district. Prior to this our boilers provided 600# steam to our turbine/generators which, upon passing through the turbine, was extracted for use in the heat district. Also, with the installation of these boilers comes the first use of a reverse osmosis water purification system.
The Utility is in the process of replacing the 60+ year old 15/28 MVA Transformer. This transformer is on the 306 feeder, the main Minnesota Power feeder entering Virginia, and sits near the power plant. It was rebuilt in 1991, at which time it was 30 years old. Planning for the new transformer, custom built by Virginia-Georgia Transformer, began over two years ago. The new transformer, weighing approximately 52 tons, is by far the largest of our 6 Minnesota Power points of delivery into the Virginia distribution system at a total load capacity of up to 28 MVA. This feed is then split into 5 separate city feeders for different areas of the city. Upgrading this piece of equipment will add capacity, redundancy, and reliability to the electrical system. There is still a fair amount of work to do, but we hope to have this transformer up and running before winter.
The water towers all underwent maintenance this year. The main tower and the hospital tower were drained, cleaned, inspected and repaired as necessary. The Midway tower was completely rehabbed, with the interior and exterior being stripped down to bare metal. The ladders, handrails, and aviation lights were all brought up to current standards, and then the interior and exterior was recoated.
In 1974, congress enacted the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) to help protect America’s drinking water by providing standards to public water system operators. The SDWA was recently amended to require all public water systems in the United States to create a lead service line inventory. To comply with these revisions, Virginia Public Utilities is required to create a material inventory of all water services that are connected to the distribution system throughout the city by October 16th 2024.
In Virginia, the property owner owns the entire water service from the water main into the building. To create the inventory, we are asking for some help from the citizens and property owners throughout the city by sending us information and a few pictures of your water service. Please click here for more detailed instructions and photo examples.
Back in April, staff at VPU began prep work to get the Malone Hall building set for demolition. After the removal of materials, equipment, and vehicles was completed, an outside contractor came in to safely remove any asbestos that was on the premises. The demolition is now underway, and expected to be completed by the end of August. Please be aware that a portion of both 6th Avenue and 2nd Street South will be closed to traffic throughout the removal process as a safety measure.