August 12, 2023
Conesville (OH) – The Frontier Group of Companies (FGC) imploded the two remaining stacks and three steam boilers at the former AEP Conesville Power Plant on Saturday morning. The demolition of the stacks and steam boilers were the last in a series of landscape-altering activities that reflect the progress of repurposing the former power plant site over the past three years.
Units #1 and #2 were the first units to commercially generate power at this former 2-gigawatt coal power plant, coming online in 1957 and 1959 respectively. Unit #3 joined them 1962. The three units were flanked, on the horizon, between two 500’ foot stacks so familiar to the community that their presence has long served as a wayfinding landmark for residents, visitors, and employees.
Saturday’s event marked the final implosion on the 2,500-acre site as FGC continues its work to develop the new Conesville Industrial Park, a key industrial megasite in southeast Ohio.
The initial commercial power generation units were constructed in Conesville because of two resources in the area that were necessary to generate electricity, coal and water, that were abundant and readily accessible. Revolutionary at the time, Conesville’s units #1 & #2 were “cyclone-fired,” which took advantage of coal grades not suitable for pulverized coal combustion. The cyclone furnaces fed coal in a spiral manner into a combustion chamber for maximum combustion efficiency. Units #1 and #2 generated 125 megawats of power, while Unit #3 generated 165 megawatts of power. Units #1 and #2 were retired in 2005 and Unit #3 was retired in 2012.
FGC has been working closely with local and state officials to recruit industries to the Conesville Industrial Park. Industry prospects have been visiting regularly to consider the site for a variety of industrial uses; including manufacturing, automotive, energy generation, energy storage, data centers, and logistics.
While the crews of FGC stood motionless and reflective, alongside residents and public officials during the implosion, the topic of conversation quickly turned the progress being made by FGC in preparing over 500 acres of industrial real estate for future employers.
“I see progress every day,” said David Franjoine, CEO, Frontier Group of Companies. “There are multiple development sites materializing on the same site where the power plant once stood.”
The long-anticipated demolition, an important milestone in the site repurposing process, comes at a time when prospects across the United States are taking notice of Conesville, located 70 miles east of Columbus in Coshocton County.
“Make no mistake, the same attributes that made this site attractive for a power plant over a half-century ago, abundant resources and strong labor pool, are projected to attract close to $2 billion of private investment and well over 2,000 jobs over the next 10 years,” said Pat Ford, Director, External Affairs and Business Development, Frontier Group of Companies.
ABOUT THE FRONTIER GROUP OF COMPANIES
Founded in 2001, the Frontier Group of Companies brings together strategically aligned businesses with expertise and capabilities in the area of large-scale industrial and commercial facility reuse, repurposing and redevelopment. The companies of the Frontier Group include industry leading operations for industrial demolition, industrial dismantling, asset recovery, equipment repurposing, industrial clean-up, site remediation, brownfield redevelopment, facility acquisition, real estate development, energy exploration, energy production, and materials recycling.