A test tower has shown Gamesa Energy that the winds near the Buckhorn are promising, so the company will build a taller tower at another site in the area as a preliminary to developing a wind farm.
Gamesa erected the 60-meter tower on City Authority land about a mile from Skyline Drive on the city side, and will construct an 80-meter tower at a still-undetermined site for further testing, said Ellen Lutz, director of development for Gamesa, and Alyssa Edwards, project developer.
The company hopes to build up to 30 two-megawatt turbines in and around Logan Township on Chestnut Flats south of Route 36 and east of Gallitzin-Coupon Road.
Initial results show the area is “a very good wind resource,” Edwards said.
The company would not place any turbines visible from Horseshoe Curve, she said.
In addition to testing for wind, the company studies environmental, cultural, wetlands and habitat issues before seeking approval for turbine sites, Edwards said.
To build all the turbines it wants for the Chestnut Flats project, the company would need to acquire additional land beyond the overlay zone, they said.
The turbines would be 400 feet tall with a spinning-blade pattern 286 feet in diameter.
The disturbed-area footprint, including roads, is about an acre per turbine, Gamesa officials said.
The company tentatively has agreed to pay $6,000 per turbine on a 20-year lease, authority Chairman Maurice Lawruk and solicitor Alan Krier said.
The authority agreed with Logan Township not to negotiate placement of turbines on Brush Mountain near Kettle Reservoir because the mountain is far more pristine than Chestnut Flats.
By William Kibler
18 May 2007
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