Demolition of shuttered Trenton coal plant's boiler house set for Friday

The boiler house of a defunct coal power plant once operated by DTE along the Detroit River in southern Wayne County will be demolished this Friday morning.

It's the second phase of a two-pronged implosion the utility had planned for the old Trenton Channel Power Plant ahead of a new battery energy storage facility. DTE's plan will enable it to keep up with Michigan's goals of beefing up the resilience of its grid while pulling more power from clean energy sources.

The smoke stacks were torn down in mid-March. On Friday, the boiler house will be brought down.

Similar to the demolition on March 15, the area that will be affected will be limited to nearby roads. Residents can expect to hear a short series of loud noises a little like thunder.


Trenton Channel Power Plant demolition begins with stack implosion

The smoke stacks of the Trenton Channel Power Plant came down Friday as DTE began the demolition of the building along the Detroit River.

What to expect

The demolition should last about a minute.

Road closures will be in effect for Grosse Ile Parkway Bridge, Grosse Ile Parkway, West Jefferson Avenue, and West River Road for up to two hours. Both vehicles and pedestrians will be restricted from the area during that time.

Along with the sound of thunder, there will be a mild vibration those that live nearby might detect.

There will also be some dust kicked up by the project, which should dissipate within a few minutes. However, as a precaution, residents may want to close any open windows and put their car in the garage.

DTE plans to have water misters on the site to mitigate any dust that forms.

What's planned for the site?

This isn't the end of the site's usefulness for DTE, which plans to replace the former coal-fired plant with an energy storage facility that will house a 220-megawatt battery center. It'll open in 2026.

According to a news release from DTE, the facility will be the largest energy storage project in the Great Lakes region.

During periods of excess power generation, the facility will serve as a home for electricity that can later be distributed to homes hooked up to DTE's grid. It's expected to power around 40,000 homes. 

Part of the facility's cost is offset by $140 million in tax incentives offered through the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act. The total cost of the project is $500 million.