ARCADIA – Plans are developing for 330-foot-tall wind turbines to dot 30 square miles between Arcadia, Fostoria and New Riegel by late 2013.
Air Energy TCI, in Montreal, plans to operate 53 to 88 turbines in Hancock County’s Washington and Biglick townships and Seneca County’s Loudon and Big Spring townships. It has leases for 75 percent of the land it seeks, said Rory Cantwell, Air Energy’s development manager.
Residents can learn more and voice concerns about the proposed wind farm, to be called the Hancock-Seneca Wind Energy Center, at an open house from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Oct. 4 at Arcadia Lions Community Center, 301 W. Brown Road, Arcadia.
Air Energy is not required by the state to hold the open house, Cantwell said. The company will not apply to the Ohio Power Siting Board for approval of its plans until March 2012. But Cantwell said the open house is a good idea.
“This is going to be a fairly large infrastructure project in an agricultural community,” he said. “Since there will be a change to the landscape, we think it’s best to consult with the locals.”
The company for more than 1½ years has been studying the area’s wind speeds and direction, humidity, barometric pressure and temperatures, Cantwell said.
Other traits also make the area a good fit.
“The lay of the land is favorable, in terms of being flat, agricultural and sparsely populated,” Cantwell said.
It helps that residents have been cooperative and a connection to the power grid is nearby. An American Electric Power substation west of Fostoria would receive energy from the wind turbines.
The turbines would be linked by a power collection system, Cantwell said. The wind farm would generate enough energy to power 33,000 homes.
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