First Wind, an independent U.S.-based renewable energy company, today announced that it has obtained $206 million in financing for its Route 66 Wind project in Armstrong and Carson Counties, Texas. With financing closed for its first renewable energy project in Texas, First Wind will continue engineering and construction activities on the project.
The Route 66 Wind project is expected to deliver power to the ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas) power markets through the new CREZ (Competitive Renewable Energy Zone) transmission system, and will generate clean, renewable energy through a capacity of 150 megawatts (MW).
“We are excited to complete the financing and continue construction of the Route 66 Wind project, which is our first project in the State of Texas,” said Paul Gaynor, CEO of First Wind. “This financing is an important milestone for the construction of Route 66 Wind, and we appreciate the commitment of our financial and construction partners to help us bring cost-competitive, renewable energy to Texas. We also appreciate the support we’ve received from county officials and local landowners. We are glad to be able to make a direct investment into the local economy throughout the construction and successful operations of the project.”
Route 66 Wind Power, LLC, a subsidiary of First Wind, closed on a $206 million financing agreement for the Route 66 project, with Morgan Stanley and Santander acting as joint lead arrangers, and Morgan Stanley serving as the administrative agent. The two have also committed tax equity into the deal. Morgan Stanley Commodities is providing a long-term ERCOT power hedge and BayernLB is providing term debt financing for the project.
Construction work began in late 2013, and is expected to create hundreds of jobs in the state of Texas. M.A. Mortenson is acting as the prime contractor. With construction activity on Route 66 Wind starting in 2013, the project will qualify for the federal wind energy Production Tax Credit (PTC).
Vestas will supply 75 V110 turbines with a capacity of 2 megawatts (MW) each to the project near Amarillo, Texas. First Wind owns and operates wind projects in Maine, Vermont, New York, Utah, Washington and Hawaii.