Outdoor Recreation Most-Recommended Use for Acme Site

Some of those who attended the August visioning session for the Acme power plant site. (Photo by Pat Blair)

Outdoor recreation topped the list of proposed uses for the old Acme power plant site that came out of a visioning session held in Sheridan in August.

That's according to two consultants who served as facilitators during the session. Nearly 60 people attended the event, held to determine the future for the plant site that's now owned by the Sheridan County Conservation District.

More than 70 votes were cast for some type of recreational use for the site, followed by 22 votes cast for a science/teaching center, and 21 for a natural park with trails and a water park.

Among the least popular suggestions for future use of the site were as a golf course or small business incubator.

A Phase II environmental assessment is being completed for the site but isn't yet available. But preliminary results of the assessment are that some level of cleanup will be needed to address contaminants including debris and asbestos.

The plant, which is near the banks of the Tongue River north of Sheridan, was completed in 1910 and provided electrical power to the local mines, coal camps and the city of Sheridan. Over the years, the plant became obsolete and was shut down in the late 1970s. In the years since then, it was the site of several industrial uses, including auto dismantling and battery disposal. The plant has been unoccupied for several years.

The conservation district bought the property in June. The consultants' full report is on the Sheridan County Conservation District web site.

View more photos below.

City Councilman Thayer Shafer studies some of the suggestions posted for use of the site at the August session. (Photo by Pat Blair)
Attendees included, left, County Commissioner Terry Cram and Ranchester Mayor Peter Clark. (Photo by Pat Blair)