Mortenson, a leading solar engineering, procurement, and construction firm today announced that it has begun building an 86 megawatt (MWAC) solar facility for Silicon Ranch in Jeff Davis County in Southeast Georgia. Once the project is completed, Silicon Ranch will provide the renewable power it generates at cost-competitive rates to Green Power EMC, the renewable energy supplier for 38 Georgia Electric Membership Corporations (EMCs) throughout the state.
Silicon Ranch selected Mortenson as the project’s Engineer-Procure-Construct contractor. Mortenson is responsible for the design, procurement, construction, commissioning, and handover of the facility. One of the nation’s largest independent solar power producers, Silicon Ranch is funding the installation and will own and operate the array for the long-term, an approach the company takes with every project it develops across the country.
The project scope includes civil, foundations, racking, modules, inverters, electrical collection systems and balance of systems hardware. Construction is now underway and expected to be completed before the end of this year. To construct the project, Mortenson is seeking to hire more than 275 team members from the local area including mechanics, electricians, operators, foremen, safety professionals, inventory specialists, carpenters, installers, general laborers and more. Mortenson will provide local workers with on-site training in pile driving, tracker assembly, and panel installation.
The project, which is located in the unincorporated community of Denton, expands Silicon Ranch’s presence in Jeff Davis County, where it already owns and operates three solar projects totaling 112MWAC in Hazlehurst. As a result of its previous investments, Silicon Ranch already stands among the largest taxpayers in Jeff Davis County, and its new project will contribute significant additional tax revenues for the local community for years to come.
“At Silicon Ranch, we believe we can make a positive difference in the communities we serve, and we’re pleased to work with Mortenson to execute this vision in Jeff Davis County,” said Silicon Ranch Co-Founder and CEO Reagan Farr. “Hundreds of our neighbors helped to build our three previous projects in Hazlehurst, and we are excited about bringing that local experience to bear for this new project as well. We thank our partners at Green Power EMC and the Georgia electric cooperatives for making this project and these investments possible.”
“More than 30 EMCs will share in the energy produced by this new facility, and we are grateful for the support from our members and for the partnership we have with Silicon Ranch,” said Green Power EMC President Jeff Pratt. “We are proud that in addition to providing our members with reliable, affordable, renewable energy, our work can further support economic development in Jeff Davis County.”
“We look forward to working with Silicon Ranch on the Snipesville solar project in Georgia and are proud to be helping to provide renewable energy to Green Power EMC’s network in the state,” said Trent Mostaert, General Manager and Vice President for Mortenson’s Solar & Emerging Renewables Group. “This is a great opportunity for individuals in the area with experience or those seeking new skills to learn about building solar and help to secure our sustainable energy future.”
“We wish to thank Silicon Ranch for choosing to expand its operations in Jeff Davis County and for making another significant investment in our community,” said Dwyane Creamer of the Joint Development Authority of Jeff Davis County, Hazlehurst, and Denton. “This development will generate new tax revenues for the county government and the school system and provide a welcome stimulus to our local economy.”