IPL to build $25M storage complex in Marion County

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The utility that provides electricity to nearly a half-million central Indiana homes and businesses has chosen Marion County to locate a battery-storage system capable of storing 20 megawatts of power.

Indianapolis Power & Light said the $25 million complex that's expected to go online next summer on Indianapolis' south side will be equipped with rows of lithium-ion batteries. IBJ first reported on the project May 18.

The Battery Energy Storage System, or BESS. will be built at the Harding Street Station. The utility received approval for a 10-year tax abatement from the county that will save it more than $3 million on the project.

IPL said it also considered putting the project in Martinsville, but preferred the Indianapolis location. 

The company said the project will help give its electrical grid a boost during peak energy demand periods, and more efficiently balance supply and demand.

IPL said it will be the first large-scale energy-storage system in the 15-state regional power-transmission entity Midcontinent Independent System Operator Inc., which is based in Carmel.

Energy Storage Association executive director Matt Roberts said the U.S. has about 340 operating energy-storage systems of various types. They can store about 21 gigawatts of power.

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