The company said that it has a 30% interest in the project, which investment is estimated at more than $1 billion. Construction of the new facility is likely to be completed mid-2011. Astoria I & II will have a total generating capacity of 1,150 MW.

Gerard Mestrallet, chairman and CEO of GDF SUEZ, said: “From both our North American and our global approach to market expansion, developing an enhanced and strategic presence in New York City is a primary objective.”

Astoria Energy II is expected to strengthen the company’s participation in the New York power market, which the group entered when it purchased a 30.45% interest in the 575 MW Astoria Energy I power plant in May 2008.

New York is one of four North American markets for GDF SUEZ, along with the New England, Texas, and Mid-Atlantic States markets, the company said.

The company said that upon completion of Astoria Energy II, it will own an interest in a total of 1,267 MW in New York market. The group also has ownership interests in Rochester, Syracuse, and Nassau County power stations.

The Astoria Energy II facility has a 20-year contract with the New York Power Authority for the whole new power plant’s generating capacity. The facility would provide power to municipal customers, including the City of New York, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and the New York State Office of General Services.