Construction of natural gas units at Drake Power Plant, years of building dismantling likely to be over |  Shared content only

Construction of natural gas units at Drake Power Plant, years of building dismantling likely to be over | Shared content only

Six new natural gas units are under construction where a huge coal pile once stood at the Martin Drake Power Plant, a major step toward dismantling the old blue building downtown.

Colorado Springs Utilities began work on the new $120 million units shortly after the power plant burned coal for the last time in September. Project supervisors said crews needed to take out coal handling equipment, such as tankers, and excavate the site that was black with dust to lay the infrastructure for the new turbines.

Chief Operating Officer Travas Dell said the crane is now inserting generator parts into place and is expected to start producing power in late February or early March. Jesse Marshall, the project manager, said the new turbines can produce up to 167 megawatts of power and, while still impressive in size, cover only 3 acres compared to Drake’s 50 acres.