Local residents prepare for Cianbro’s launch

Posted March 25, 2009, at 11:47 a.m.

ORRINGTON — Margaret Parker is adamant about being on her back porch, which overlooks the Penobscot River, to watch Cianbro’s first load of refinery modules make their way to their new home in Texas.

“I think it’s one of the greatest things that has happen in the area since I‘ve lived here,” the 37-year Orrington resident said.

“It’s just like back in the 1800s,” she said later. “We had ships all over the world, Asia and Europe,” delivering Maine goods.

Parker’s home lies in South Orrington, so the barge of modules, which is scheduled to leave Cianbro’s bulkhead in Brewer at 9 a.m., should pass her home shortly after. She and her neighbors discussed on Wednesday the best time to begin looking for the vessel, she said.

The Columbia Boston, a 94-foot-by-354-foot black barge, was loaded with four modules, made over the last several months by workers at Cianbro’s Eastern Manufacturing Facility.

Pittsfield-based Cianbro has been hired by Motiva Enterprises LLC to deliver 53 refinery modules — heavy-duty industrial steel frames filled with pipes, pumps and electronics — for Motiva’s $7 billion ex-pansion of the Motiva Port Arthur Refinery in Texas.

The remaining modules will be shipped out to the Gulf Coast over the next 14 months.

The modules, which fill the massive barge, will be easily visible from several locations along the river, including nearby Hamlin Marina in Hampden, along with waterfronts from Winterport to Bucksport to Stockton Springs and beyond.

The barge trip between Brewer and Port Arthur, Texas to expected to take 15 to 20 days.

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