Power Plant Conversions, Museums & Historical Sites
other regions
Chivilingo (Chile)

This 420-kW SHP was built in 1897 by Compania Explotadora de Lota y Coronel at a site 12km south of Lota. It is said to be the first hydroelectric plant in Chile and the second in all S America.Construction work began in 1896, with civil works and the aqueduct built by the owners and electric engineering performed by Consolidated Co of North America and Schuckert & Co of Nurnberg, Germany. Two 215-kW Pelton T/G sets connect ed via a 10km, 10kV tie-line to the Lota undersea coal mine. There, the power was used to run an underground train caryying miners and coal and for pumps that extracted water from the mine.The Chivilingo power station operated until 1976 when the second turbine failed. In 1998, the building an 6ac site it was transferred from Lota municipality to Fundacion Chile, which promoted it as a historical site and local tourist attraction. The building was damaged by a heavy earthquake in February 2010.

Photograph by B.diaz.c (wikipedia)
Posted 15 Aug 2015

Jeppe Street - Turbine Hall (South Africa)

Victoria Falls and Transvaal Power Co (VFP) built the coal-fired Jeppe Street PS in Johannesburg as the last and largest of three plants in the Netown area. The first 10-MW T/G set started up in Sep 1927 and the final machine in 1939, by which time the plant comprised eight units, 4 X 10 MW, 2 X 17 MW, and 2 X 20 MW. Jeppe went to essentially standy-by operation after the Orlando PS was finished in 1945. The Jeppe steam-electric plant was finally closed in Oct 1961, however two 22-MW English Electric gas turbines were commissioned at the site in 1967, the first in Africa. These stayed online through the 1970s, but thereafter the Jeppe PS buildings were abandoned and fell into disrepair.

In 1998 AngloGold separated from  Anglo American and management decided to use the Turbine Hall component of Jeppe Steet as its new HQ. In 2000, several hundred squatters were evicted from the complex. In 2005, AngloGold merged with Ashanti Goldfields and a month later AngloGold Ashanti signed the building lease from the Tiber Group. In 2007, almost ten years after its initial conception, AngloGold Ashanti moved into its new headquarters at Turbine Square. Portions of the Turbne Hall are also used for conferences and private events such as weddings.

Photograph by Zatuga (www.skyscrapercity.com)
Posted 18 Jul 2015

Molet (Argentina)

In 1897, Alfredo Molet began development of a new hydroelectric plant on the Río Suquía in Cordoba Province, Argentina, to supply power to the nearby calcium carbide works of Companía Molet de Carburo de Calcio. In 1902, actual development got underway, but in 1909 the hydroelectric scheme was sold to Companía General de Electricidad (CGE). In 1910, calcium carbide production was halted and so the new power plant was instead repurposed to supply electricity to the to the city of Cordoba. In 1946, it became the property of the Province of Cordoba and remained in service until 1959 when the new San Roque hydroelectric plant was commissioned 2km downstream on the Suquía. The nearby substation remains in service.

The first 478-kW unit at Molet came online in 1902 with a turbine from Amme Giesecke and Konegen and a generator from Siemens Shuckert. In 1912, CGE installed two 405-kW Escher Wyss turbines with Brown Boveri generators. After years of neglect, the generating plant was reopened as a Museo Usina Molet in May 2005. With technical assistance from ABB Argentina, the T/G sets were cleaned and refurbished along with the control panel, voltage regulators, relays, and other equipment.

Photograph courtesy of Museo Usina Molet
Posted 1 Feb 2009

Moscow-2 (Russia)

The Moscow-2 power station was built from 1904-1908 by the architect V N Bashkirov and the prominent engineer Vladimir Shukhov on the Bolotnaya embankment in central Moscow. It was installed with eight watertube boiles from the Fitzner & Gamper factory in Sosnowiec, Poland, plus two 3-MW BBC turbosets. These were used to power the local trams, hence the PS nickname Tramvaynaya. This photo dates to 1913. At that time, about a third of all of Moscow's electricity was used for the tram system. The 64m brick chimneys were taken down years ago. Also gone are the original clock tower and some of the other decorative finishes

Photograph courtesy of a-dedushkin.livejournal.com
Posted 27 Jan 2016

Moscow-02 (Russia)

This is a contemporary photo of the Moscow-2 power plant. In its later years, it was used by Mosenergo for heating only, serving Moscow's Golden Mile. The station closed in 2006. In 2009, it was designated as a cultural heritage site. In Oct 2014, Mosenergo sold a 50% stake in the property to OOO Levit for 900mn rubles. The property is to be redeveloped into an arts and cluture center, perhaps by 2018.

Photograph courtesy of abnews.ru
Posted 27 Jan 2016

Naharayim (Israel/Jordan)

This hydroelectric plant complex consists of three dams, intake channels, bridges, reservoirs, penstocks, and electromechanical equipment. The site is near the junction of the Jordan and Yarmuk rivers and was developed over 80yrs ago by Pinhas Rutenberg in what was then called Transjordan. Construction began in 1927 and almost 3,000 workers were employed during the five years of plant construction making it the biggest construction project to that date in Palestine. On 6 June 1933, the Naharayim power plant was dedicated in a ceremony presided over by the nominal owner, Emir Abdullah, the ruler of Transjordan. The powerhouse was designed for four T/G sets but only three were installed totaling 18.6 MW. In time, Naharayim supplied more than three-quarters of power generated by the Palestine Electric Corp, but this contribution diminished as conventional thermal plants were installed in the region.

Naharayim operated until 1948, when it was abandoned and partially destroyed. For almost 50yrs, the plant's dams, bridges, and reservoir were inaccessible. In 1994, the Israel-Jordan Peace Treaty turned the area into an international border crossing and there is now a proposal by Friends of the Earth Middle East (FoEME) to revive the area, including the power plant assets, as a Peace Park and eco-tourism site. In part, the project also proposes to re-build the wetlands along the lower Jordan River.

Photograph courtesy of Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Posted 6 Aug 2008

St James (Singapore)

In October 1923, Singapore's Munipal Commissioners undertook to build a coal-fired power station at Keppel Road near the entrance to Sentosa Island. Construction got underway in later 1924 at the Cape St James Site. AH Preece of Preece & Cardew was chief designer and a 2-MW set started up in Jun 1927. The project had some initial operating issues, but thereafter served as Sinapores main power station for several decades. In 1956, the Public Utilities Board began to back-off power production at the site and the coal-fired plant was decommissioned in the 1970s. From 1960 to 1965, eight combustion turbines turbines were installed at St James and these were retired from 1974-1976.

In 2004, plans were mooted to convert the old power station to a nightlife and entertainment hub. Work began on the project in 2005. Owners were FJ Benjamin, EK Holdings and state-owned Mapletree Investments. About half of the S$43mn investment was used to prepare and resoter the Edwardian red-brick facade and the steel-framed building structures. The revitalized power staion ropened in Sep 2006 and now has 9 clubs and 3 restaurants. In 2009, the National Heritage Board gazetted St James Power Station as a national monument together with five other buildings.

Photograph by Sengkang (wikipedia), some information from Singapore Infopedia
Posted 23 Mar 2013

Updated 27-Jan-2016