Gerdau plans an $80 million investment in solar power on existing land.
Project Description: Ellis Solar, LLC, a subsidiary of 174 Power Global, proposes to construct and operate a solar photovoltaic (PV) generating facility, on behalf of Gerdau, on approximately 700 acres of land within the city limits of Midlothian, Texas, in the northwest corner of Ellis County. The project is proposed on Gerdau’s property, located in Midlothian, Texas, north and south of Highway 67, and west of Highway 287. The PV-solar facilities would be located within a 1,405-acre property owned by Gerdau and would provide an estimated 80-megawatts (AC) of electricity to be directed into the on-site steel mill’s substation. Bifacial solar panels will be positioned on single axis tracking racks oriented north to south within the development area. Single axis tracking racks will rotate from east to west following the sun’s path during the daylight hours. At night, the panels become stationary in a horizontal position. Underground or overhead collector lines would transmit energy to and from an on-site switchyard.
Project Purpose: Development, construction, and operation of on-site solar energy generation facilities would provide the Midlothian Steel Mill with long-term predictable electrical energy. The Project is part of Gerdau’s capital improvement plan to maintain the Midlothian Steel Mill as a competitive steel producer in the global marketplace. The Midlothian Steel Mill is one of the largest steel “mini-mills” in operation in North America, operating two 150-ton electric arc furnaces to process and ship on average 112,000 tons per month of steel products. To support this production, the Midlothian Steel Mill employs 908 employees.
Project Specific Use Permit: An application will be submitted to the City of Midlothian for a Specific Use Permit in accordance with City of Midlothian Ordinance No. 2019-20 and City of Midlothian Code and Zoning Development Regulations.