WILLIAMSPORT – Seven years after the project was announced, a subsidiary of Duke Energy has started construction on a 70 megawatt wind farm on Laurel Hill Ridge off Route 14 in northern Lycoming County.
Half the pads for the 30 turbines have been poured, and Laurel Hill Wind Energy of Rutland, Vt., anticipates the more than $150 million project will be in production by late summer, spokesman Robert Charleboif said Tuesday.
The turbines will generate enough electricity to serve a city of between 40,000 and 50,000 people, he said. The tip of a turbine fin at its apex will be 425 feet above ground.
Laurel Hill had to overcome a zoning issue and two appeals that went to Commonwealth Court before construction could start.
The county commissioners changed the zoning ordinance to make wind farms a permitted use but with conditions. The zoning board subsequently approved Laurel Hill’s application finding it met the conditions. Commonwealth Court in 2009 rejected two appeals of the board’s decision.