Three Michigan legislators took a field trip to the Gaylord area on Friday, September 18, to tour the new Alpine Power Plant. The House Committee on Energy Chair, Aric Nesbitt, Committee Vice Chair, Gary Glenn, Committee Member, Triston Cole, and Michigan Electric Cooperative Association Legislative Consultant, Susan Schlaybaugh joined Alpine’s Project Manager, Brian Bejcek, Project Spokesperson, Ken Bradstreet, and Wolverine’s Vice President of External Affairs, Kim Molitor, to see the progress at the site.
The group began the day with a brief presentation from Bradstreet on the overall project and how it will bring significant capacity to northern Michigan, which is important for the state. From there, Bejcek led a walk through and discussion of the project construction site, indicating where the turbines would be located once they have been delivered to the site in early December. The most recent progress includes pouring the foundations for the exhaust stacks, marking a significant milestone in the project.
“The legislators were definitely in tune with the industry and had some excellent questions,” stated Bejcek. “We had thought-provoking discussions on several energy-related topics. Overall, the legislators were very interested in the Alpine Power Plant and the headway we’ve made to date.”
Representative Triston Cole added, “The Alpine Power Plant is an important investment in Michigan’s energy future. This is my second time touring the site and I am very impressed at how far the project has progressed”.
While Bejcek indicated that the biggest hurdle to the project timeline is finalizing the interconnection process with the Midcontinent Independent System Operator, he noted that the team is close to finalizing a solution and expects to begin transmission interconnection work soon. The project is currently on schedule, with the goal of having all of the foundations and underground work completed before winter.