Vestas gets wind turbines order for Idaho wind farm

The first wave of new hires announced to join the Windsor blades plant for Vestas Americas will be on board before Christmas, a Vestas spokesman said Thursday.

Andrew Longeteig said 100 workers will join the Windsor wind power plant payroll by early fall next year, and about 40 will be hired before the holiday.

"We have a fairly strong order pipeline," Longeteig said. "Â…We’re just hiring in accordance with our order pipeline and our business needs."

The planned 100 new hires, which will bring the Windsor Vestas workforce up 750, are not directly related to the latest Vestas order announced Thursday, Longeteig said.

Vestas will supply 44 V100-1.8 megawatt wind turbines to Seattle-based Ridgeline Energy LLC for the Rockland wind farm near American Falls, Idaho.

The wind energy contract includes delivery and commissioning along with a 10-year service and maintenance agreement. This is Vestas’ second wind energy order this year for a wind-power project in Idaho. The 79.2-megawatt wind power order is scheduled for delivery by mid-2011 with a commissioning scheduled for late 2011.

Earlier this fall, Vestas announced orders for wind turbines for wind farm projects in Michigan and Northern California.

In early October, Vestas announced its purchase of 80 acres for additional wind blade storage and potentially to expand its blade manufacturing plant in Windsor. At that time, the company said it will need an additional 1,000 employees in Colorado to staff its manufacturing plants around the state.

The 100-employee increase at Windsor was announced, as was about 750 needed to staff the wind turbine blade plant in Brighton, set to open in 2011, and 167 job openings at the tower plant in Pueblo. For the latest Idaho order, Longeteig said, the blades will be made in Denmark, the towers from Pueblo and the nacelles from Brighton.

By Chris Casey, Greeley Tribune,