The Siemens plant in Ft. Madison. (photo by Will Buss)

A recently shuttered wind turbine manufacturing plant will reopen in southeast Iowa by the end of the month.

Lee County Economic Development Group President and CEO, Dennis Fraise, says Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy in Fort Madison is bringing workers back.

“It had been hibernated, as that was the word they used, and so they’re starting production again. I think they’re bringing people back right now,” he says. The company laid off 171 workers in May and 121 workers were let go in February.

Fraise says the company has received new orders and newly passed federal legislation is helping the wind turbine industry compete after past federal regulations and tariffs tied to wind energy forced recent layoffs.”They’re going to do two production lines and they’ll be operational by the end of this year,” Fraise says.

Fraise says the two production lines will produce a new and larger series of windmill blades. There is no word on how workers many the company will be hired.

(By Will Buss, Tri States Public Radio)