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PORTLAND-There’s been a lot of rumblings lately about Denmark-based wind turbine manufacturer Vestas consolidating its local operations, which include the headquarters for Vestas Americas. In response to a general statement by Vestas earlier this month, the news reports have been equally as vague. GlobeSt.com spoke with Vestas SVP Roby Roberts late last week to get some additional detail.

Roberts tells GlobeSt.com the company is indeed talking to architects and negotiating for land and that the general plan is to break ground in the summer for a 500,000-square-foot to 600,000-square-foot headquarters office building and occupy it in late 2011. He would not identify any specific parcels but did say the search was focused in the greater Downtown area and that it would be used to consolidate six leases totaling 100,000 square feet and provide room for growth.

“Nothing has been signed but it that is our intention,” he tells GlobeSt.com.

A posting by incoming Mayor Sam Adams on his blog stated Vestas would develop a $250-million, LEED-Platinum building in the South Waterfront District. Vestas has been offered a one-time $12-million financial incentive package by city and state officials based on its plans to build up its 350-person payroll here to 1,200, Adams wrote. Reiterating that nothing has been signed, Roberts declined to comment.

Right now, the company’s construction group is in one building, its service group in another, accounting in yet another, as well as warehouse and training facilities, all Downtown, Roberts says. The goal is to get them under one roof, in Portland, because the region has become a “sort of an energy hub” that includes a lot of wind developers and a lot of good contacts with higher education that will help the company grow its workforce, he says.

“We’re on the first floor of this emerging wind market,” Roberts says. “Right now in the US we have just over 20,000 megawatts of wind installed and in the next 20 years we should have over 300,000 megawatts in the US.”

Vestas has installed more than 35,500 wind turbines in 63 countries including 9,600 on American soil. The company’s core business comprises the development, manufacture, sale and maintenance of wind technology that uses wind energy to generate electricity. The company had a 23% share of the global market in 2007.

Beyond Portland, Roberts says the 1,000-person company is in the process of building four manufacturing plants in Colorado and opening a research and development center in Houston. The company also has its purchasing group in Chicago, its sales office in Toronto and a new satellite research facility in Boston.

In 2002, the company revealed plans for a 113-acre headquarters and manufacturing facility in Portland’s Rivergate industrial area but scrapped the plans a few months later when the US Senate failed to renew a wind-energy tax credit later that year.

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