Summer Restart Planned for Thomson Hydro Station

Updated: 05/13/2014 2:28 PM
Created: 05/13/2014 2:23 PM

After nearly two years of repairs to flood damage, Minnesota Power has announced plans to restart the Thomson Hydro Station as soon as regulatory approval is received.

Al Hodnik, the President and CEO of Minnesota Power parent company Allete, made the announcement at the company's annual shareholders meeting Tuesday.  The Thomson Hydro Station is on the St. Louis River in Carlton County, about 20 miles upstream from Duluth.

The facility sustained major damage in the June 2012 flood that devastated much of the greater Twin Ports region.  Minnesota Power said St. Louis River floodwaters swamped the six Thomson turbines, overtopped the Thomson reservoir, and breached a portion of the earthen dike at the forebay, which is a shallow reservoir that feeds water into the generating station.

Minnesota Power said its hydro engineers anticipate at least one of six turbines at the facility will begin generating energy again this summer, with all six expected online by the end of the year.  The company estimates reconstruction and improvements cost about $90 million.

Hodnik said the company has also made improvements to several other hydro facilities in the region.  A new website,, provides the history of Minnesota Power's hydro system and recent investments.

Front Page

  • Proposal May Change Coverage For Hearing Device Used By Cloquet Baby

    A hearing system clipped to a pink headband is the only way a 10-month-old baby in Cloquet can hear. The device is currently covered by insurance, but Medicare is proposing to change its classification and coverage. The Dowell family is worried other insurance companies will follow.

  • Sheriff: Man Attacked Homeowner before Fatal Shooting

    Koochiching County Sheriff Brian Jespersen says a man who shot and killed an intruder was defending himself and his mother, who had been attacked.

  • Update: Missing Hurley Man Found in Submerged Vehicle

    Police say the body of a Hurley man missing for nearly a month has been found inside his submerged vehicle. Duane R. Jussila, 74, was reported missing on July 5.  He had last been seen in Ironwood.

  • Former IRRRB Commissioner Gustafson Dies

    Jim Gustafson, who represented Duluth in the state Senate and headed the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board for seven years, died July 23 at the age of 75. During his tenure, Gustafson helped complete Giant's Ridge Golf Course, negotiated the Northwest Airlines ticket reservation center, and cut Ironworld's subsidy by $1 million.

  • Folks Getting Ready For Christmas in July

    It may be summer, but folks in Grand Rapids are getting ready for Christmas in July. Operation Christmas Child delivers shoe boxes full of goodies to kids around the world during the holidays. On Tuesday, people will get together at Grand Rapids Alliance Church to stuff shoe boxes and learn more about the project.