WAREHAM – A real estate consultant representing opponents to the proposal to develop six electricity-generating wind turbines in town estimated the 1,295 homes within 1 and ¼ miles of the 500-foot structures would lose a total of $280 million in property value.
Michael McCann of McCann Associates of Chicago, representing Wareham Residents Opposed to Bog Wind, spoke before a crowd of more than 100 residents attending Wednesday night’s latest Zoning Board of Appeals hearing on the proposal by developer Beaufort Windpower LLC in the town hall’s basement cafeteria.
He said the towering structures were too big not to have a negative effect on nearby residential property values.
“You can’t fit an elephant in a shower. That’s what they’re trying to do here,” he said.
But Beaufort Windpower President Glen Berkowitz countered that McCann was basing his projections on the effect posed by much larger, out-of-state turbine projects.
They were “in relation to huge wind farms, much larger than here,” averaging 135 turbines per development.
He added Massachusetts needed to generate more electricity through a clean, renewable source like wind. Massachusetts produces less than 1 percent of its energy from wind power, he said.
Berkowitz added his firm is “committed “ to being a good neighbor.
The project would also bring in $250,000 in annual property taxes to the town, would generate more than $100,000 in permitting fees and “would preserve nearly 900 acres of bogs” during the next two decades on the agricultural land where they will be placed.
Last night’s hearing was continued.
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