An aerial view of Moray West Whitehillock Substation during our project.

Whitehillock Substation, Moray West Offshore Wind Farm

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Summary

Sector
Commercial
Value
£8.9m
Location
Keith, near Aberdeen
Status
Live
Customer
Siemens Energy
Completion
October 2023
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Civil infrastructure to support Siemens Energy sustainable energy generation in the North East of Scotland

Moray West is an 860MW offshore wind farm, located 22km off the coastline in the outer Moray Firth. The developer, Ocean Winds, has installed 60 turbines and selected Siemens Energy to supply the project’s onshore Whitehillock Substation near Keith. 

Robertson is currently on site delivering the main civil works for the new substation which is required to increase the subsea cable voltage from 220 to 400kV. This will allow the developer Ocean Wind’s 860MW Moray West Offshore Wind Farm to connect into the national electricity transmission infrastructure, at neighbouring Blackhillock Substation. 

Working as civil engineering contractor for Siemens Energy, we delivered the main civils works including two substation buildings, earthworks; utilities infrastructure including drainage, ducting and service trough installation. More than 300 concrete equipment bases were installed, along with internal access roads and path networks for the new substation. 

Scope of works

  • Construction of the Voltage Source Connector (VSC) building and internal fit out. 
  • Foundations and floor slab for the new control and amenities building. 
  • Installation of 300 precast concrete equipment base foundations. 
  • Site lighting and CCTV. 
  • Electrical transformer bunds. 
  • Security fencing, lighting, signage, and soft and hard landscaping and reprofiling the landscape to help screen the project.

Sustainability

Located directly off the main A96 trunk road, which links Inverness and Aberdeen and screened by the Pitlurg Wood shelter belt, the site of the new substation was selected to minimise its environmental impact in the local area. 

On completion, new landscaping and planting was installed.  

The site was adjacent to a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), with a water stream running outside the site boundary. We worked closely with the onsite Ecological Clerk of Works and maintained the surface water management and SuDs (sustainable drainage systems) pond to regulate run-off, allowing sediment to settle so water left the site clean.  

We were also responsible for maintaining site access during the winter months with snow clearance works. Our works were delivered in line with the environmental protections in place, and we made daily checks to ensure they were met. 

A lasting positive community impact

Robertson shares the developer Offshore Winds’ goal to deliver lasting local benefit to communities and supply chain through the wider Moray West project as well as all our activity, wherever we work. 

Joint Meet the Buyer events with Ocean Winds, Siemens Energy and Robertson were held in Buckie and Keith, to share progress updates with the local communities and to support the development of local supply chains in the area, allowing them access to secure work within the project.

We supported local career pathways, working in partnership with local education and helping Siemens to deliver a comprehensive Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) programme in the region. This has built up our existing links with Moray College, so we can support skills development in the future. 

Project team

Civil engineering: Robertson Civil Engineering

Main contractor: Siemens Energy

Developer: Ocean Winds

Client: Siemens Energy 

Ultimate Client: Ocean Winds