Investment to craft the future of local power, attracting additional tenants and saving businesses dollars
Litchfield, MI – Michigan Hub, LLC broke ground today on its clean power generating facility at the site of the former Endicott coal-fired power plant, 720 Herring Rd, Litchfield, MI, in the Litchfield Industrial Park.
According to company Chief Executive Officer Glenn Foy, “Michigan Hub will craft the future with local power, supplying our tenants and customers with clean, locally-sourced electricity, steam, and chilled water at a price that will reduce their production and utility costs and increase their competitive positions.”
“Michigan Hub’s vision is aligned with the corporate sustainability missions of companies located in Litchfield, and we plan to attract additional tenants to our site on Herring Road. We believe in a true ‘hub’ of forward-looking businesses that demand low-cost energy that is locally produced and reduces their carbon footprint and costs.”
Michigan Hub’s first tenant will be Independent Barley & Malt, Inc. (IB&M), a commercial-scale producer of malted barley and grains for craft brewers and distillers in the Great Lakes region. IB&M will be the largest malt house in Michigan and the largest east of Milwaukee, producing 50,000 tons of malted grains each year.
To complete Phase 1 of the Michigan Hub project, over $100 million will be invested at the 42-acre site, creating approximately 75 jobs–equivalent to the number previously working at the former Endicott Power Plant.
According to IB&M Chief Executive Officer, Michael Cooper, “Independent Barley & Malt’s operation is energy intense. Our initial interest in locating our plant in Litchfield was because of Michigan Hub’s vision for the site. The synergies were immediately clear–the opportunity to access lower cost energy at an industrial site located in a thriving rural community were critical to our site selection. We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Michigan Hub and build on the success of each other’s projects.”
Foy also indicated that the City of Litchfield and the Litchfield Tax Increment Finance Authority have been instrumental in Michigan Hub moving forward with its development on such a broad scale. Litchfield City Manager Doug Terry commented: “The renewal of the old power plant to one that is clean and uses state-of-the-art technology validates our work. Michigan Hub and Independent Barley & Malt will be perfect additions to our community. We look forward to welcoming more businesses to Michigan Hub’s energy park in Litchfield.”
Michigan Hub acquired the property at 720 Herring Road from Michigan South Central Utility Resource Solutions (formerly Michigan South Central Power Agency) on September 30, 2016, and is scheduled to complete full demolition by the end of October. Michigan Hub’s combined heat and power plant is modular in design with the last module scheduled to be installed by mid-2022. Michigan Hub expects to have 176 MW of power generating capacity–150 MW to meet the needs of Michigan municipal utilities to comply with State Act 341, which mandates sourcing local electrical capacity, and 26 MW for its industrial tenants.
Desserts with Discussion: The Comeback of Spartan Barley
for the Michigan Brewing Industry
Barley, combined with hops, yeast and water, it is one of the four essential components of almost any beer. Currently, most barley grown in Michigan originates in North Dakota and central Canada, regions with different climatic and environmental conditions. That is until now.
In a world that is focused on local and sustainable crops, Spartan Barley is a winning heirloom variety for Michigan. From a 5 gram sample that was saved in a seed bank Dr. Russ Freed and colleagues have been able to grow enough Spartan Barley to put it into production on a small scale. With Dr. Dean Baas’ help the first crop was planted and harvested on the Kellogg Farm here at Kellogg Biological Station in 2016.
- How the 1916 Spartan Barley was brought back to life in 2016
- Why barley is a good fit for Michigan, and some of the challenges for the barley comeback
- Current research projects on both winter and spring barley including variety and management trial
A winter barley test plot, supplied by major seed company used for demonstration was planted September, 2018 in Litchfield, Michigan.
We partnered with KBS and other local farmers to help choose varieties, and our goal is to test a couple different varieties.