With construction crews busy working alongside Maine’s winter weather, Reed & Reed announced that the company now has more than 200 wind turbines either installed or under construction.
This milestone was reached on the Rollins Project, near Lincoln, Maine, and represents the 192nd turbine Reed & Reed has erected or begun constructing in Maine and the 195th grid scale wind turbine in the state overall.
The remaining 10 turbines the company has installed are in Massachusetts. Jackson Parker, president and CEO of Reed & Reed, the lead contractor building the Rollins Wind project in Penobscot County, commented on the project’s progress.
“It is exciting to reach this new milestone and gratifying to know that many people in northern Maine, specifically Lincoln, Lee, Burlington, Winn and Mattawamkeag, are working hard, helping to build Maine’s latest wind project. Right now, we have about 200 people at work on the site, and more local businesses providing essential services. This is extremely good news given these tough economic times. While we are focused on building a new generation of clean, renewable power, we are also very aware that this industry has helped the people of rural Maine earn paychecks and keep food on their tables.”
Rollins Wind is a project being developed by First Wind and consists of 40 GE 1.5 MW turbines, which is enough renewable energy to power more than 22,600 homes per year.
“This project is due to be completed later this spring. It is significant as it continues the momentum of wind development for Maine. We are proud that Reed & Reed’s 200th wind turbine is at Rollins and appreciate all the hospitality and support we’ve gotten from our new neighbors in the towns of Winn, Lee, Lincoln and Burlington,” said Matt Kearns, vice president of Northeast Development for First Wind.
“In the first year after the project is completed, First Wind estimates that the Towns of Lincoln, Lee, Winn and Burlington will deposit a combined total of over $750,000 of First Wind tax money into their respective town economic development funds. This is money that the towns will be able to use to fund a wide variety of job creating and community development projects they each identify.”
Parker said his company relies on local subcontractors and vendors to get these projects done on time.
“Not only do our construction crews rent local motel rooms and frequent the local stores, but Reed & Reed remains committed to hiring local people to work on and support these projects. This maximizes the benefits to the community and creates a real sense of pride.”
Paula and Terry Raymond, owners of Raymond’s Variety in Lee have seen a real boost in their business this winter, due to the Rollins Wind project.
“Breakfast is the big meal for the construction crews. They come in every day and get their breakfast. And our fuel business is up because they fuel up their trucks. They also buy boots, gloves and other supplies from us so we feel lucky to have this project close by.”
Brian Souers, who owns Treeline Inc., can testify to the positive impact this project is having on his hometown of Lincoln.
“I can see the results of this type of activity ripple through the community. My business provides a number of services. In particular on the Rollins’ project, we have appreciated the opportunity to service the construction vehicles when needed. This has meant a boost to our bottom line.”
Jan Clifford, who owns The Lincoln House Motel, thinks that the Rollins Wind project has meant a much more prosperous winter this year.
“The guys are in the restaurants. They are buying gas and food. And all of our motel rooms have been filled this winter.”
Clifford and David Wright also jointly own the Cozy Court apartments in Lincoln. Clifford said, “Our efficiency apartments are all rented this year. Winters are usually slow for us, but we’ve had our biggest winter yet.”
The Maine Renewable Energy Association (MREA) is a not-for-profit association of renewable power producers, suppliers of goods and services to those producers, and supporters of the renewable power industry in Maine.
MREA members generate electricity in a sustainable manner from wind power, hydro, biomass, tidal and waste to energy. Located in Augusta, Maine, MREA represents the renewable power industry at the State Legislature and Maine Public Utilities Commission.