Three companies plan to build 480 MW of photovoltaic solar in southern Nevada near transmission lines that connect to California and Arizona.

First Solar is planning a 200-MW project and Invenergy intends to build a 130-MW project, according to Friday filings with state regulators. The projects were winning bidders in a competitive solicitation for space in the Dry Lake solar zone in southern Nevada.

Last month, NV Energy, a utility based in Las Vegas, asked the Nevada Public Utilities Commission for permission to build a 150-MW solar project in the Bureau of Land Management's Dry Lake solar zone.

In June, the BLM named the three companies as winning an auction for solar developers that wanted to build projects in the Dry Lake solar zone, about 15 miles north of Las Vegas.


The Dry Lake zone includes two transmission corridors with natural gas, petroleum product and electric transmission lines, including a 500-kV transmission line.

Last week, First Solar started building the 250-MW Silver State South solar project near Primm, Nevada. First Solar sold the project in May to NextEra Energy Resources for an undisclosed price. Power from the facility will be sold to Southern California Edison under a 20-year contract.

First Solar is also building the 250-MW Moapa Southern Paiute project in southern Nevada. Power from the project will be sold to the Los Angeles Department of Power for a fixed $91.69/MWh over the life of the 25-year contract, which was approved two years ago.