CHEROKEE COUNTY, Iowa (KCAU) – Iowa is known to be one of the leading wind energy producers in the United States. A local Siouxland community is now following that trend by adding a new wind farm in Cherokee County.
The project started in April by installing 82 wind turbines on 30,000 acres between the towns of Marcus and Cleghorn.
All of the energy generated from this Iowa wind farm will be going directly to Google. It is part of the tech company’s transition to using cleaner, renewable energy. The project has created 150 new construction jobs bringing in a large amount of traffic into the area.
“Housing, rental of housing, hopefully, there will be some permanent people that will settle in Marcus, our restaurants, and other businesses in town will also benefit in town from the added commerce in the community,” said Harlan Hansen, the mayor of Marcus.
Once the project is completed, 25 employees will stay in the community to maintain and oversee the turbines providing a lasting economic boost in these rural communities. Right now, those 150 temporary workers building the turbines are providing a boost to local hotels, rental properties, restaurants and more.
“So many more people in town, and just even noticing traffic on the highway has probably doubled or tripled and business-wise. It’s fantastic and a lot of our employees have made friends with the wind turbine workers,” said Marcus Junction Manager Mindy Walton.
The Marcus Junction gas station and restaurant found out in April that the project would be underway. The management had to double their staff to keep up with the demand of visitors.
This will be the second wind farm in Cherokee County. It is expected to be completed by the end of the year.