by Lisa Tome
The coming months will bring a major construction project and as many as 600 jobs to the county.
Officials from the Wildcat Point Generation Facility reviewed the plans which will bring construction jobs to the county from Spring 2015 until Fall of next year. "We are moving into the construction phase. This will be the largest construction project in the county for the next few years," said an Old Dominion Electric Cooperative (ODEC) official.
The Wildcat Point electric generation facility will share space with the Rock Springs generation plant which has been in service for more than a dozen years. Wildcat Point is a partnership, owned by ODEC and Essential Power. It's a wholesale, not for profit facility. In May 2013, work began on expansion. Various necessary approvals have been acquired since that planning began. Groundbreaking for the project was held in October, 2014. During the construction phase, gas turbines, a boiler, and a steam turbine will be brought in by rail and barge. The engineering work is underway. The construction on the equipment foundations will begin in late February. There will be separate water and gas lines run to the site. The gas line will be run from Peach Bottom, Pa.
When it is completed, the facility will generate power to serve 340,000 homes. It is expected to be up and operational in June 2017. Cecil County will receive payment in lieu of tax payments of $120 million through 2035. ODEC officials estimate that the economic value to the county over the 30-year life of the plant will be a billion dollars.
Once the construction is completed, 28 permanent employees will be hired to operate the plant. ODEC already donates to Cecil College and Conowingo Elementary School. They will expand their reach to West Cecil Health Center, Cecil County Health Department, and the coming Bassmaster Elite Tournament.