The hum and noise of power generators, once more common in northern Centerville, has been replaced this month with sounds of clanging metal and bulldozers.

Site work has extended into at least a third week as Alliant Energy works on decommissioning a generator site on the north edge of Centerville.

The generators bear some sort of nostalgia for many in the community. The rumble of the generators that provided power to address peak consumption needs at one time were common in the hot summers.

The facility was dubbed a “peaker” facility by the power company, providing power when demand from air conditioners exceeded what was coming down the lines from afar.

As Alliant Energy, though, has built other power generation sites elsewhere that are more efficient, there became less of a need for them to use the Centerville facility.

The last time they were used to provide power was 2016, Alliant Energy spokesman Mike Wagner said. In 2017, the power company briefly fired them up for testing, but the site was taken offline in November 2017.

The original diesel-powered generators at the site, located at the end of North 14th Street, were installed in the 1960s, Wagner said. Additional turbines were added in 1989.

At its peak, Wagner said the site could provide up to 60 megawatts of power. About 650 average homes can be powered from a single megawatt, industry officials estimate.

Demolition, depending on weather, could be finished as soon as by the end of November or early December.

Kyle Ocker can be reached at or by calling the newsroom at 641-856-6336. Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker



Kyle Ocker is the editor of the Daily Iowegian. Prior to becoming editor, Ocker was a correspondent, sports editor and associate editor at the Daily Iowegian, and was the managing editor of the Knoxville Journal-Express.

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