Longroad Energy, a U.S.-based renewable energy developer, owner, and operator, announced the financial close and start of construction of its El Campo wind farm in Knox County, Texas. The two Danish pension funds — PKA and PenSam, represented by their investment manager AIP — have also became long-term investors with Longroad.
“Longroad is pleased to bring this deal through this crucial step and to partner with PKA and PenSam through AIP. We are proud of our track-record in developing, financing, constructing, owning and operating well-structured renewable assets in the U.S.,” said Paul Gaynor, CEO of Longroad. “This approach appealed to AIP, and its investors, and the investment in El Campo is a great first step to take with our new partners. We hope this is the first of many partnerships with this team in the U.S.”
This project is one of the largest investments ever made in Knox County. The total cost of the project is approximately $335 million, and it is expected to achieve commercial operation by July of 2020.
The project will contribute nearly $20 million in property taxes to the Benjamin Independent School District, Knox County, Knox County Hospital District, and other local taxing authorities.
The El Campo project is expecting to provide employment for approximately 200 people during construction. Eight full-time staff will manage the day to day operations of the facility.
“The El Campo wind farm is our second sizeable investment in renewable assets in the U.S. within a year and it represents yet another important addition to our ambitious green investment strategy,” said Michael Nellemann Pedersen, CIO of PKA. “We are delighted to partner with an experienced renewable energy developer like Longroad Energy and we are optimistic about extending the partnership even further in the future.”
The project has two corporate PPAs: DaVita Inc. has signed a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for 83 MW and Crown Holdings will take 111 MW in its PPA. On the financing front, BHE Renewables is the sole tax equity investor. The lending group is led by KeyBank N.A. and includes HSBC Bank, CIBC, and Zions Bancorporation, N.A.
Longroad Energy’s affiliate, Longroad Energy Services, will provide construction management, asset management, operations and maintenance, and remote monitoring services to the project over a 20-year term.