Document Type

Closed Project

Publication Date

Spring 2004


Dragan Milosevic

Course Title

Independent Research: Project Analysis

Course Number

EMGT 506/606


United States. Bonneville Power Administration -- management, Electric power distribution -- High tension -- Technological innovations, Project management -- Methodology


This paper uses a case study approach to analyze an important Transmission Business Line project in Bonneville Power Administration. The Kangley-Echo Lake Transmission Line project is an interesting project to study because there were many diverse challenges faced and overcome by the project manager and the project team during its lifecycle.

Like most transmission line projects for Bonneville, there are many years of overall electrical grid system planning and design behind it. Each transmission project is unique in that it tackles a specific issue of load within a certain area of the northwest region of the USA. With the rapid growth of the Seattle/King County region of Washington State, the transmission grid needed to be revamped in order to handle the larger electrical load of the area. Without this revamp, the possibility of brownouts and/or blackouts was very high. The Kangley-Echo Lake project was proposed and set into motion in 1999. It would relieve load problems, as well as create a redundant 500Kv line for backup routing in the event of a loss of another north-south 500Kv line in the grid. From the outset the project met with great opposition from many fronts. It required a great deal of leadership and skill, from the project manager and team, just to complete the project. The project was successfully energized and turned over to operations and maintenance at 1900 hrs. on December 31st, 2003.

This project was chosen to be analyzed because of the importance to the company, the challenges it faced and the quality of the team and project management. I will base my analysis on two frameworks: Strategic Project Leadership by Dr. Aaron Shenhar [1] and Excellence in Project Management by Dr. Harold Kerzner [2].

The Strategic Project Leadership framework was chosen to evaluate the project on six aspects: project strategy, project spirit, leadership, integration, and adaptation to a specific project type and learning’s from the project. The evaluation showed many positives, with respect to the framework, in this project. After evaluating the project within the Strategic Project Leadership framework, it will be analyzed within the Excellence in Project Management framework.

In Kerzner’s framework, he considers six areas in project management: behavioral excellence, integrated processes, informal project management, culture, management support and training and education. This project evaluated well in most of these areas. Since the project has been evaluated, by comparing it with the two frameworks, a critical evaluation, recommendations, and lessons learned will be presented.

The results from the critical evaluation showed that the management of the project was very good and that was definitely room for overall improvement in areas. Based on that evaluation, major recommendations on data systems and minor recommendations are presented. Finally, lessons that I learned on the project will be presented.


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