Board Moves Forward on Judy Reservoir to Mount Vernon Transmission Line Project

Posted Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Skagit PUD Commissioners authorized General Manager George Sidhu to execute a $35.6 million contract with Scarsella Brothers, Inc. for the construction of the Judy Reservoir to Mount Vernon Transmission Line Phase II project during a regular meeting of the board on Tuesday night. 

Initially installed in 1961, the Transmission Line project replaces a 24-inch diameter concrete cylinder pipe with a new 36-inch diameter welded steel transmission line. Large sections of the existing transmission line are virtually inaccessible most of the year because it runs beneath surface and groundwater.  

“It’s exciting to see this come to fruition,” Board President Joe Lindquist said. “I’ve been on the board just over two years now, and I’ve seen two breaks on that transmission line, so getting this project underway is imperative to what we set out to do.” 

The project includes laying a 5.3-mile transmission pipeline with 1,900 feet of horizontal directional drilling under the Nookachamps Creek, constructing a new 200-foot pipe bridge, and installing a fish passage culvert. 

In 2010, Phase I of the Judy Reservoir to Mount Vernon Transmission Pipeline project was completed for $4.2 million. Phase I followed the Kulshan Avenue right-of-way from East College Way to North LaVenture Road in Mount Vernon.  

A large section of Phase II will be constructed within an abandoned railroad corridor owned by Skagit County and slated to become part of the Centennial Trail. The PUD coordinated the new pipe bridge design with the County to include pedestrian surface improvements, paid for by the County through an interlocal agreement.  

Funding for the project is comprised of several sources: Washington State Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, Washington State Public Works Board, Banner Bank, and PUD system development funds. 

Construction is estimated to take 2½ years.