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Melrose considers wind turbine at Mount Hood

Melrose is thinking about putting a wind turbine near the 13th hole at Mount Hood Golf Course.

On Wednesday, residents are invited to an open house at Melrose City Hall to learn more about the project, which is being studied by the city’s Energy Commission and Park Department.

The open house, scheduled for 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., will give residents the chance to ask questions and learn more about wind energy.

“We’re trying to get the word out,” David Shakespeare, a commission member, told members of the Board of Aldermen last night.

A power point presentation will be given. The public is also invited to share their ideas about wind power, he added.

The commission is working with the city’s Park Department, which runs Mount Hood, to consider placing the turbine in an area of the course known as the Meadow.

“We are working hand-in-hand with the Park Department,” Shakespeare said.

A feasibility study for the turbine must be conducted. A request for qualifications, to hire someone to do the study, will be issued by June 30, he said.

“The study will [determine] if there is enough wind on Mount Hood, what the access to the site is,” Shakespeare said. “We hope to hire somebody by the end of August.”

The commission is considering three sizes of turbines for the site: 225 kilowatt, 600 kilowatt,and 900 kilowatt.

The commission favors the 900 kilowatt turbine, which could power the clubhouse at the course, and the city’s three elementary schools, Shakespeare said.

In the fall of 2008, the Melrose Energy Commission worked with city officials to obtain a $340,000 Massachusetts Technology Collaborative grant for a 30-kilowatt solar panel array on the roof of the Melrose Veterans Memorial Middle School. Click here to see how much energy the panels are generating.