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Calpine says project ‘is a go’

HANGING ROCK – Hanging Rock residents had the opportunity Tuesday night to meet some potential new neighbors.

Thursday, March 01, 2001

HANGING ROCK – Hanging Rock residents had the opportunity Tuesday night to meet some potential new neighbors.

The San Jose, Calif.-based Calpine Corporation, which is partnered with CME North American Merchant Energy, is interested in building a power generating facility in Hamilton Township. The company held a public hearing at Rock Hill No. 4 Elementary to discuss the power plant site.

The proposed site, dubbed Calpine Lawrence Energy Center, will generate electricity using natural gas to produce steam. Calpine representatives said the plant will generate enough electricity to meet the needs of 800,000 homes throughout the region.

Company representatives said $510 million of capital investment money will be placed in the plant. The company also estimates the creation of 350 to 400 union construction jobs to build the plant in the first phase of development. The construction phase is projected to take two years to complete.

The Calpine representatives said the company is committed to go forward in the construction of the site in Hamilton Township. One spokesman said, "In Calpine’s eyes, the Lawrence County project is a go."

The company hopes to have more meetings with the community to ensure the move to the area will go smoothly and the community’s needs are met.

The company has posted a website for the local project that explains the operations of the facility. The site is located at: http://www.lawrence-energy.com.

Calpine’s meeting comes on the heels of another power-generating plant’s public meeting. Duke Energy recently introduced a proposal to build a similar natural gas-fired power plant in Hamilton Township.