Crews Complete Work on New Lake Erie Wind Tower

Thu September 29, 2005 - Midwest Edition

CLEVELAND (AP) Technicians and volunteers have finished building the tallest wind-monitoring tower on the Great Lakes, something that could help scientists determine the future of wind power on the lake.

The 3-ton wind tower rises 165 ft. above the lake atop the Cleveland Water Department intake crib, which sits 3.5 mi. north of downtown and is the major collection point for the city’s drinking water.

It took a helicopter three attempts over three hours on Aug. 29 to position the upper half of the galvanized steel tower into place. But once workers finally bolted it into place, there were cheers.

The tower will collect data for two years. The goal is to determine whether it’s feasible and economical to build large, electricity-generating wind turbines several miles offshore in Lake Erie.

The data is needed before any power company will invest money to build wind turbines, said Aaron Godwin, project manager for Green Energy Ohio, a nonprofit clean-energy advocacy group that is spearheading the work.

Crews put the lower half of the tower into place on July 25.