The owner and operator of the Fisk and Crawford coal power plants in Pilsen and Little Village, announced yesterday that it will close both generating stations in September, ahead of schedule. In an agreement reached by the company, community organizations, and the mayor’s office in February, Fisk could have operated until the end of this year and Crawford until the end of 2014.
“The company has made the decision that best serves its purposes at this stage,” said Rosalie Mancera, Pilsen Alliance Board member. “This adds more urgency to working together to find the best future use for those sites and hopefully also employment for all those families that are suffering.”
The generating stations are owned by Midwest Generation, and have been operating since the 1950s. Although the company had agreed to run at least one plant for another two years, the high cost of producing energy through coal made it speed up that action. Midwest Generation Vice President Doug McFarlan expressed admiration for the energy company’s workers who have been “incredibly professional” since the announcement of the closures.
Pilsen Alliance is a member of the Mayor’s Fisk and Crawford Reuse Task Force along with other stakeholders. A report from the task force is expected in June.