Martin Drake Power Plant’s coal-to-gas conversion is now complete with the commissioning of 6 LM2500XPRESS gas turbines from GE.

The challenge

In accord with Colorado’s statewide greenhouse gas emissions roadmap, the Colorado Springs Utilities Board retired its coal-fired Martin Drake Power Plant in 2022—12 years earlier than planned. In its aim for grid stability and renewables growth, the Colorado Springs Utilities Board turned to GE.

The solution

GE’s LM2500XPRESS* power plant technology is quick to install and saves costs on coal-to-gas transition. Fully commissioned in May 2023, the six GE units have put Colorado Springs Utilities on a path to reduce CO2 by at least 80% by 2030, from 2005 levels.


Reducing carbon by 80%

6 x 34 MW

LM2500XPRESS gas turbines

12 years

Colorado’s early jump on moving to renewables

carbon reduction by 2030


These units are lightyears ahead of what it took to run an aging coal-fired power plant. They require far less staff to operate and take mere minutes to get up and running compared to the hours it took to ramp up the old Drake units. That level of efficiency is critical as we embark on our energy transition.

Shawn Timothy

Energy Project Managing Supervisor, CSU Drake

GE’s LM2500XPRESS gas turbines are 95% factory assembled for a “plug and play” package that can be installed in as little as two weeks; a timely way to generate fast grid power. Each power block includes a modular GE LM2500 aeroderivative gas turbine and gas compressor. A black-start diesel generator was also included for start-up reliability.

These dual-fuel units, primarily burning natural gas, are liquid-fuels compatible for periods of low natural gas availability. Advanced emissions control uses a dry low emission combustion system that eliminates water use, and an oxidation catalyst to lessen emissions from the units.

The 34-MW LM2500XPRESS units—the first of their kind to be installed in North America—started commercial operation in May 2023. Using the highly modular nature of the units, the LM2500XPRESS units will eventually be relocated to other sites in the Colorado Springs area.

With GE’s LM2500XPRESS power plant technology, Colorado Springs Utilities is able to provide reliable, flexible power and renewables growth, putting it on the path to decarbonize its electricity service by up to 80% by 2030.

*Trademark of General Electric Company

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