December 12, 2018

City leases eastern Belvoir to NextEra Energy for wind farm

By Chrissy Suttles | Wyoming Tribune Eagle |

CHEYENNE –Renewable energy company NextEra Energy now has an additional 4,700 acres of eastern Belvoir Ranch land to use for wind energy development.

The Cheyenne City Council voted 9-0 to amend a 2012 agreement with NextEra, identified as Cheyenne Wind LLC, Monday. The amendment expands leased acreage from 12,000 to 16,700 – nearly all of the city-owned Belvoir Ranch – for the proposed Roundhouse Wind Farm project.

The $335 million project would cover 30,000 acres of public and private Laramie County land for wind development to power northern Colorado communities.

The expansion passed the council with no debate.

“We have been working with Public Works and with the Board of Public Utilities to ensure this project is compliant with all existing uses of Belvoir Ranch, and all proposed uses contemplated in the master plan for the Belvoir Ranch,” said Ryan Fitzpatrick, Roundhouse Renewable Energy Project director. “The area within the original lease had 64 proposed turbine locations, which constitutes about 160 megawatts of power. With the new property, there would be an additional 11 turbines, or 27.5 megawatts of power.

Over the course of the 30-year lease, Fitzpatrick estimates about $39 million in operating payments to the city.

To move forward, the company must present the project to a number of planning departments in Fort Collins, Colorado, for recommendation and approval by the Fort Collins City Council, Laramie County and the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality.

“This is an expansion of the lease, but it’s certainly not a rubber stamp on the project,” Councilman Rocky Case said.

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