Wind farm work nears; giant blades, cranes, equipment starting to arrive
From an article by Lyn Jerde in the Portage Daily Register:
A blaze-orange sign on Highway 33 just west of Cambria says “Utility Work Ahead.”
What an understatement.
Starting May 23, the skyline in the northeast Columbia County towns of Scott and Randolph will undergo a transformation, as 90 electricity-generating wind turbine towers, each about 400 feet tall from the ground to the highest blade tip, start to go up, and up, and up – forming what is likely to be the largest wind energy operation in Wisconsin.
Columbia County’s highway safety committee Friday got a taste of what’s to come when Glacier Hills Energy Park starts to take shape. Parts for the tower legs, which look like giant-size tubes, could start arriving by truck as soon as this Friday, said Michael Strader of We Energies.
We Energies is building the wind park to increase the amount of energy it generates through renewable resources. It is expected to generate up to 207 megawatts of electricity.
Until sometime in December, the towers will go up at the rate of about one a day, Strader said.
The parts of the towers will be trucked in from Manitowoc, and the blades, cells and hubs will arrive by rail from Colorado. Some of the blades are already here, on land beside the railroad tracks in the town of Courtland, which was set aside as the staging area for the wind farm’s construction with authorization in November from the County Board’s planning and zoning committee.