The future of the Martin Drake Power Plant is in discussion after City Council asked Colorado Springs Utilities to look at options.
The coal-fired power plant was built in the 1960s. It is in good shape, but would need major upgrades in order to meet Environment Protection Agency standards.
According to Colorado Springs Utilities spokesman, Dave Grossman, the deadline would be 2017.
Grossman estimated it would cost $350 million to upgrade the Drake Power Plant and the Ray Nixon Power Plant.
But according to Grossman, using a new emissions-scrubbing technology developed by the Springs-based Neumann Systems Group could save about $100 million.
However, Grossman said some think the investment is not worth it if the Drake power plant will have to be retired in about a decade anyway.
A study is underway to look at what would be best in terms of technology, economic development and what the public thinks.
Third-party firms are conducting the study and results are expected by the end of the year.
Grossman said third-party firms are being used so that no one perceives the results as biased by Colorado Springs Utilities' interests.
City Councilman Tim Leigh said it is important to have all the answers before moving forward with a plan.
He said that is the benefit of living in city with a community-owned utilities.
City leaders will consider several different options and if the Drake Power Plant is shut down, the Ray Nixon Power Plant could be expanded or Colorado Springs Utilities could choose to buy power from another utility. There is also the option of building a brand-new power plant.
According to Leigh and Grossman, many have voiced concerns that the Drake Power Plant is not good for tourism because it is considered an eyesore.
Public meetings are going to be held in the coming months and city leaders said they hope many residents will choose to participate in the discussion.