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About Hickory Wind 

Frequently Asked Questions

Image of a wind turbine being installed by UKA.

Q: What’s happening?

A: Hickory Wind is an 80 megawatt (MW) wind farm coming to La Salle County that will generate enough electricity to power 27,000 Illinois homes. The project will create more than 130 temporary construction jobs, up to 10 permanent jobs, and more than $800,000 in annual tax revenue over the next 25 years. UKA North America will own and operate Hickory Wind, and the company looks forward to being part of the community. 

 

Q: What are the details of the project?

A: The project will use the latest wind turbine technology designed to increase energy production and improve project economics while reducing impact on the landscape. La Salle County has more than 500 MW of wind energy in operation. La Salle County wind farms have generated $30 million in tax revenue since 2003.

 

Q: What’s in it for me? How will the planned project affect my property?

A: Hickory Wind will generate good local jobs, lease payments for landowners, tax revenue for local government, and clean energy for the county. Additionally, the turbines commonly used to capture wind energy may have a positive effect on crops 

according to a study from Iowa State University.

Q: What is your approach to working with aircraft pilots to ensure safety?

A: Wind energy has more than two decades of history to draw on in advancing safety regarding wind power facilities and aircraft. We will be working closely with the FAA to comply with federal standards created to provide aerial applicators, recreational and larger aircraft with clear visibility of structures.  Additionally, local communication is key. For this reason, we are interested in talking with helicopter and fixed-wing pilots. If you are a pilot, or if you work with a pilot, please have them reach out to us at HickoryWind@uka-group.com. Our goal is to establish clear lines of communication to ensure the safety of pilots and project workers.

Q: Is the new tower in Tonica related to Hickory Wind?

A: Yes, the meteorological evaluation tower, or MET Tower, is collecting information like wind speed and direction that will allow us to select the best wind energy technology for the project. The project was fully permitted by La Salle County through a special use permit process.

Q: What does UKA know about the community?

A: As a good neighbor, we are committed to actively listening, quickly responding, and working together. UKA North America is humbled and honored to work closely with community leaders and residents to develop an economic engine and clean energy investment that can serve the region for decades to come. We look forward to working with as many local partners as possible.

 

Q: How do I know that UKA is here to stay?

A: UKA North America’s team has decades of proven experience in renewable energy development. The company’s local office is in Peru, Illinois; the North America headquarters is in Stuart, Florida.

 

UKA has more than 1,000 MW of operating renewable energy projects, 700 employees, and 15 offices across five countries. UKA is a privately owned company that has developed, owned, and operated renewable energy projects for more than 22 years. 

 

Q: I heard one of your competitors has all the land they need and they’re so far ahead, you won’t be able to catch up. Is that true?

A: No, it’s not. We’re grateful for the opportunity to talk with and set up lease agreements with local landowners and will be working closely with elected officials and community leaders throughout the process. We are on-track to begin construction in 2024.