BERLIN – Jericho Power is proposing to add three wind turbines to land abutting its current project underway on Jericho Mountain.
Lindsay Deane of Jericho Power appeared before the planning board last Tuesday for a conceptual preview of the project. She said her company plans to come back to the board next month for a formal site plan review.
The proposal is to place three 2.85-megawatt turbines on land leased from Allen Bouthillier on Jericho Mountain and Mount Forist. The land has previously been logged and the turbines will be placed outside the overlay zone on the summit of Mount Forist.
Jericho Power received planning and zoning board approvals last fall to build three 500-foot wind turbines on Jericho Mountain on land owned by David Brooks. That project was slowed by a dispute between Jericho Power and Bouthillier over setback requirements for the turbines and Bouthillier went to court to challenge the city’s initial approval of the project. Eventually, the parties reached an agreement and now Deane said Jericho Power will be developing the three turbines on Bouthillier’s land as a Phase II of its current project.
Deane said her company will use much of the infrastructure being developed for the initial project. She said Phase II was designed to use the neighborhood transmission lines from Phase I and significant new poles lines or access road will not be required. She said the nearest residence will be over a mile from the closest wind turbine. Sound is expected to be minimal but Deane said a sound level study is underway.
The new turbines will be approximately 448 feet high to the tip of the blades and will be painted with a low reflective finish to reduce glare.
Deane said preliminary permitting is underway as are initial studies. An interconnection application will be submitted to Public Service of N.H. and ISO-NE. Jericho Power is also working on long-term agreements for the sale of power and renewable energy credits.
Community Development Director Pamela Laflamme said the Phase II will be considered a new project when the site plan comes before the planning board. She said Jericho Power must also get zoning board approval for the Phase II work.
Representing Coos County, Jay Poulin of HEB Engineers presented a project at the county’s nursing home in Berlin for site plan review. Poulin noted there are really two separate components to the project. One is to expand the existing entrance canopy and improve the handicap access into the facility. There will be new curbing and sidewalk and two additional ADA parking spaces at the entrance. A couple of floodlights will be installed at the end of the canopy to improve lighting into the entrance. While construction is underway, temporary handicap access will be provided through the sunroom.
The county also wants to build an 11-space parking area on the north side of the property to provide additional parking.
Poulin said the project is out for bids with the bid opening scheduled for the end of this month. He said the plan is to do the project this May and June. He added that the project is contingent on the county delegation approving the funding for it at the March budget meeting.
The planning board approved the project with the condition that Berlin Public Works Director Michael Perreault approve the new curb cut.
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