Colorado Highlands Wind site construction ramping up

The first of 42 wind tower generators is being assembled at the Colorado Highlands Wind project near Sterling, Colo.

According to a recent construction update provided to Tri-State, the Colorado Highlands Wind project is progressing on schedule with much of the site’s infrastructure – including the switchyard and operations and maintenance building – nearing completion.

Recently, contractors began assembling the first of 42 wind turbine generators (shown in photo) on the site located near Sterling, Colo.  The 67-megawatt wind farm, scheduled for completion in December 2012, will sell all of its output to Tri-State under a 20-year power purchase agreement.

As of the end of August, all access roads to the wind turbine generator locations were complete, all FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission), county and state permits have been received and a total of 39 wind turbine base and pedestal foundations have been poured.

Wind site activities underway in September include the completion of all foundations and crane pads for the wind turbines, installation and assembly of the main power transformer, commissioning and energization of the Wildhorse Creek Switchyard and the continued assembly of the site’s wind turbine generators.

Each of the GE wind turbines has a nameplate capacity rating of 1.6 megawatts. Testing of the wind turbines is expected to begin in late October and continue through most of November.

The Colorado Highlands Wind project, which is located in Tri-State member Highline Electric Association’s (Holyoke, Colo.) service territory, will mark the second of two major wind resources for Tri-State. The 51-megawatt Kit Carson Windpower site, located seven miles north of Burlington, Colo., was commissioned and began producing power for Tri-State at the end of 2010.

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