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Lay Dam Rotor Replacement Outside View

Modernizing Lay Dam

Lay Hydroelectric Plant Clanton, AL

Hydropower has generated clean, affordable electricity for more than 100 years, but it has yet to realize its full potential. A study from Navigant Consulting shows that nearly 9,000 megawatts (MW) of new capacity could be added through modernizing existing hydropower facilities.

The modernization project includes upgrades to turbine/generator, switchyard, electrical components, mechanical equipment, and piping as well as cranes, hoists and associated structural and architectural needs, ultimately insuring reliable renewable energy for years to come.

Lay Dam is on the Coosa River in Chilton County and Coosa County, near Clanton, Alabama. The concrete run-of-the-river gravity dam was built in 1914 as the first major project of Alabama Power Company, and named for Captain William Patrick Lay, its first president.

Lay Dam’s hydroelectric facility has a generating capacity of 177 MW, made up of six turbine generators.

As the general contractor, KBH Thompson was awarded and executed multiple pre-outage and outage related scopes. The work associated with the modernization included the disassembly and reassembly of the turbine and generator and miscellaneous components; alternate power feed into the plant; cable tray installation; electrical equipment demolition/replacement associated with station service and digital control system; mechanical piping demolition and replacement associated with gen/turb/service water; equipment staging; road repair and widening; new contractor parking lot; diesel generator installation; multiple concrete foundation pads; demo of lube oil transfer pump system; and other miscellaneous work associated with demolition/abatement/scaffolding, etc.

Project Details

Modernizing Hydropower

Lay Hydroelectric Plant

Project Managers:
Sai Addagalla, Heth Melton

Estimated Cost at Completion:

Alabama Power Company
Southern Company Services

Herbie Johnson [email protected]

Duration of Project:
August 2021 to December 2022 (anticipated)

Type of Construction:
Time & Material (Pre-outage)
Firm Price (Outage)


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"One of the best opportunities we have to increase our supply of clean energy is by bringing our hydropower systems into the 21st Century. With this investment, we can create jobs, help our environment and give more renewable power to our economy without building a single new dam."
Steven Chu
Energy Secretary