FuelCell Energy Plans Major Expansion At Its Torrington, Connecticut, Operations Hub
“The business environment in the state is conducive for growth, and FuelCell Energy has already created approximately 100 new jobs in less than two years, reflecting the global adoption of our affordable and efficient distributed power generation solutions,” Chip Bottone, CEO, FuelCell Energy, Inc. said.
“Locating both our manufacturing and research and development in Connecticut enables alignment with state-level workforce development initiatives as well as research linkages with the university system,” he added.
FuelCell’s expansion project, which will proceed in two phases, is a multi-year investment of approximately $23 million to construct a 90,000-square-foot addition to the Torrington manufacturing facility, as well as add equipment for automation and technology for efficiency and advanced manufacturing implementation.
The second phase of the expansion, estimated to cost $42 million, will add manufacturing equipment to expand annual production capacity to at least 200 megawatts, increase on-site power capabilities with a larger fuel cell power plant, and create a new advanced technology research center.
The company has a manufacturing facility located in Torrington, and its corporate offices, R&D facilities and global technical assistance center, which monitors all of the company’s global installations 24 hours a day, is located in Danbury.
In support of FuelCell Energy’s expansion project, DECD will provide the company with a $10 million loan at two percent interest for a term of 15 years for each phase of the project as certain employment and revenue milestones are achieved. FuelCell Energy will be eligible for $5 million in forgiveness on the first tranche of funding if the company creates 165 full-time positions and retains 538 full-time positions, for a total of 703 positions, for two consecutive years.
The company can earn $5 million in forgiveness on the second tranche of funding if it creates 160 full-time positions and retains 703 full-time positions, for a total of 863 positions, for two consecutive years.
This expansion project also qualifies for up to $10 million of Urban and Industrial Sites Reinvestment Tax Credits, which the company can monetize over a 10-year period.
“Connecticut is a hub of innovation and, in particular, we are consistently ranked among the top states leading the U.S. fuel cell industry which, in our state alone, employs thousands of workers and generates millions of dollars in economic activity and tax revenue,” Governor Dannel P.Malloy said.
“The fuel cell industry is simply too important not to be part of our long-term energy goals to implement cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable energy sources for Connecticut’s residents and businesses.We want to ensure there is no place better for the renewable energy sector to grow and create jobs than right here in Connecticut and this project puts FuelCell Energy in the position to do just that,” the Governor added.
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