Lyon County commissioners tour Reading Wind Facility as early construction continues Featured

The early construction phase may end within the next two weeks at the Reading Wind Facility. Foundation work for the over 60 towers should begin by late July or early August, weather permitting. The early construction phase may end within the next two weeks at the Reading Wind Facility. Foundation work for the over 60 towers should begin by late July or early August, weather permitting. Jim Brull/Lyon County Highway Department

Lyon County commissioners took a tour of a wind energy development now under construction near Reading.


Commissioners took their study meeting on the road to see some of the early construction processes at the Reading Wind Facility, which are actually nearing an end. Commission Chair Rollie Martin says foundation work on the wind towers should begin by the end of the month.

Construction of the actual towers will start this fall. Martin says some towers could produce electricity by the end of the year.

Martin says the development is having an immediate boost to the Reading community, with the Miracle Cafe providing over 70 catered meals a day to workers at the site, and it's having a broader impact as workers stay at area hotels or make other temporary living arrangements.

The over 20,000-acre wind farm near Reading was in the discussion and development stage for close to a decade before county commissioners reached an agreement with RES Americas last year and with Southern Power earlier this year. Royal Caribbean is also on board as part of a verified carbon offset program. Once completed, the Reading Wind Facility will create enough energy to offset up to 12 percent of Royal Caribbean’s annual carbon emissions starting in 2020.

Martin says this project, along with the now well-established Emporia Energy Center peak energy plant nearby, are giving Lyon County a well-deserved reputation.



As part of the overall agreement, the county is receiving $9 million over 30 years as part of a payment in lieu of taxes, or PILOT, agreement. Martin says the county can use that money as it sees fit.

Photos by Jim Brull/Lyon County Highway Department

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