A day after the city of Fort Worth announced they would begin mining bitcoin, a Colorado-based bitcoin mining company announced they were expanding their Texas operations with a massive new facility in Navarro County that will eventually use enough power equivalent to lighting roughly 200,000 homes.
Riot Blockchain, which currently operates a 400 MW facility in Rockdale, Texas, said Wednesday they were developing a 265-acre site for a digital currency mining operation near Corsicana that is expected to open in July 2023.
The first phase of the facility will use about 400 MW of power, the company said. That’s enough electricity to power roughly 80,000 homes at peak capacity.
Future capacity at the site will be expandable by an additional 600 MW to 1,000 MW, or 1 GW, “via the 345 kV Navarro switch that is located approximately 1,250 feet away from the site.” That’s enough electricity to power roughly 200,000 homes during peak times.
“Upon completion of the expansion, Riot’s developed capacity will total 1.7 GW, establishing the company among the largest bitcoin mining operations globally,” said Jason Les, CEO of Riot. “Riot’s ability to source such a significant expansion opportunity in Texas exemplifies the company’s partnership-driven approach with all stakeholders, including the company’s business partners, ERCOT, and all levels of government, to commit to sustainable economic development.”
Priority Power Management, of Arlington, will be managing site development, utility interconnection, power purchase agreements and power load flexibility for the mining facility.
The first 400 MW phase is expected to bring about 270 jobs to the area.
Riot Blockchain currently operates a mining facility about 50 miles northeast of Austin in Rockdale, in Milam County, dubbed Whinstone. That facility currently has a total power capacity of 750 MW, with 400 MW currently developed. It is believed to be the single-largest facility, by capacity, dedicated to bitcoin mining in North America.
During a winter storm threat earlier this year, the company shut down 99% of its operation in Rockdale to ease the load on the state’s beleaguered power grid.