A series of 9 blue turbine generator heads are on the main floor of the power station. In the distance a large stair rises to a balcony leading to the control room. All of the generator heads are covered in plastic tarps.

Tarped Generators

All 11 generators of the Rankine station can be seen here (a small fraction of one is in the bottom left corner of the image). The long set of stairs towards the middle left of the image leads up to the control room and administration area.

Only 10 generators were intended to be operational at the same time. The extra generator was used whenever routine maintenance or repairs were being done elsewhere. However, during the war in the 1940s, electricity was very much in demand and the station operated all 11 generators at the same time.

Why all the tarps?

In 2005 the decision was made to decommission the station, as it was now 100 years old, generated 25 cycle power, and it wasn't clear whether the water rights would be extended for another 20 years. Given that uncertainty, it was mothballed and the process of handing it over to the Niagara Parks Commission began.

The water rights were reallocated to the Sir Adam Beck Station in 2009 and now work is underway to reinvent the station as a tourist destination.

When I visited in late 2006, everything was already tarped.