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Jamaican utility announces developer for new small hydro facility

MAGGOTTY, Jamaica (PennWell/12.22.2011) -- The Jamaica Public Service Company (JPS) has announced plans to develop a new hydroelectric power plant in Maggotty, Jamaica.

The new 6.3-MW hydropower facility, located in the country's St. Elizabeth parish, will be designed and constructed by England-based Kier Construction Limited. Kier signed a contract with JPS on Dec. 12, 2011 that is worth more than $26 million.

Plans for the new plant were first released in March 2009. The project is estimated to nearly double the generating capacity of the facility JPS already has in Maggotty. As of 2009, Maggotty, which was a bauxite mining town in the 1960s and '70s, had a population of 1,335.

The plant will increase JPS' number of hydroelectric stations to nine and represents the largest hydro project undertaken in Jamaica since the country attained independence in 1962.

The plant is expected to be commissioned by November 2013.

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