West Riverside Energy Center

pipes in a power plant

West Riverside Energy Center

Wisconsin’s first Envision-verified project — Alliant Energy’s $670 million, 730-megawatt West Riverside Energy Center — offers a blueprint for new power facilities across the United States. Using the latest 2-on-1 combined-cycle technology, the Beloit-based facility is cleaner and more efficient than the facilities it replaced, and plays an important role in Alliant Energy’s transition to a cleaner energy future. As owner’s engineer for the project, we worked as an extension of Alliant Energy’s staff providing technical knowledge, industry expertise and trusted advice.

Alliant Energy was praised by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure and presented with an Envision Platinum award for implementing energy efficient strategies, providing multiple benefits to the community, restoring natural ecosystems and improving air quality while providing reliable power. The company’s West Riverside Energy Center uses state-of-the-art technology to provide more efficient power and integrates with an adjacent 4 MW solar field. The new generating station’s quick ramp rate offers the ability to adjust to power demands and can fill the gaps from the intermittent nature of renewable resources.

The Alliant Energy team, with support from HDR, reduced water use with unique treatment solutions that maximize wastewater reuse within the facility and a pre-treatment system that nearly doubles the cycles of concentration compared to the use of untreated well water. A phosphate reduction program was integrated to meet Wisconsin’s stringent nutrient discharge limits and protect the nearby Rock River.

Another environmental benefit includes significant reduction of air pollutants including greenhouse gas emissions. The new facility emits less than half the carbon dioxide, two-thirds less nitrogen oxides and roughly 99% less sulfur dioxide and mercury compared to traditional coal-fired plants.

The community enjoys 67 acres of restored native, natural habitat, and new trail extension that connects to a 12-mile walking, hiking and biking trail. A new “Energy Lab” provides an interactive forum for educating the public about the benefits of the preserve and how nature works in harmony with the new generating station.

Challenged to integrate the new plants’ utilities with the existing Riverside Energy Center’s infrastructure, the team incorporated the extension of an existing natural gas supply line, enhancement of an existing horizontal collector well and new wastewater discharge outfall. This approach delivered triple-bottom-line efficiencies by avoiding the siting and construction of new infrastructure and reducing the total construction footprint by using existing assets.

pipes in a power plant
Alliant Energy

Beloit, WI
United States

Envision Platinum


Honor Award (2022)
American Society of Civil Engineers
Bronze Award (2022)
American Society of Civil Engineers
Best in State Award (2021)
Engineering Excellence Awards
American Council of Engineering Companies of Wisconsin
Top Plant Award (2021)
Gas-Fired Generation
Power Magazine
Best Project (2021)
Energy Category
Engineering News-Record Midwest
Grand Award (2021)
Engineering Excellence Awards
American Council of Engineering Companies of Wisconsin
Honor Award (2021)
Engineering Excellence Awards
American Council of Engineering Companies