Aquidneck Island Reliability Project — Rhode Island

April 2018–April 2019

Riggs Distler was contracted to provide Environmental Matting and Environmental Controls for the 61/62 Aquidneck Island Reliability Project, which will upgrade and improve power distribution for residents and businesses in the Portsmouth and Middletown areas of Rhode Island. Our work includes:

  • Building over 40 work pads and pull pads for the drilling and line crews
  • Environmental controls
  • Construction of multiple timber bridges across streams
  • Replacing multiple culverts
  • Improving right-of-way access roads
  • Bank stabilization with structured retaining walls

The road improvements involved laying hundreds of cubic yards of stone and gravel to provide a stable surface. Riggs Distler’s team also installed thousands of feet of compost filter sock along access roads and streams to prevent silt runoff from seeping into surrounding wetlands.

Challenges Overcome

Our team faced significant challenges while planning and building the road, including difficult terrain, steep embankments, a ledge, snow cover in the winter, and meltwater in the spring. Every inch of the access road was built in a wetland or over extremely muddy uplands.
In addition to the tough conditions, the client needed the road completed as soon as possible in order to perform structural assessments in advance of planned refurbishment in the coming months. The project area was also home to several rare and protected species, requiring environmental and construction controls, and portions of the road crossed lands managed by the Massachusetts DCR, requiring careful public agency coordination.

Results Delivered

Clients count on Riggs Distler’s road building and environmental matting expertise to support the reliability of their power networks. The Aquidneck Island project is an excellent example of our team’s ability to mobilize quickly to stabilize and protect work sites so that important projects can proceed as scheduled.