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Proposed route changed for turbine transport

The route for the over-sized vehicles delivering turbine components to a proposed wind farm in Plymouth has changed. Bourne Department of Public Works director George M. Sala said that the vehicles will no longer come through town by way of Main Street. Instead, they will use Route 6/28, better known as the bypass road, which runs parallel to Main Street.

“It’s better for the town because now they won’t come near any sewers or drains on Main Street,” Mr. Sala said.

The plan is still for the vehicles to go around Belmont Circle and then turn right onto Head of the Bay Road. The location of the wind farm is on Head of the Bay Road just over the town line in Plymouth.

The attorney representing the project developers assured the Bourne Planning Board last week that transport of the turbine parts will not damage the tree canopy in any way along some of the narrow roads in Bournedale that the trucks will be using to reach the work site just across the town line in Plymouth.

Attorney Jonathan W. Fitch appeared before the board Thursday evening, October 8, for an informal discussion regarding the use of town roads in Bourne by Future Generation Wind LLC and Consolidated Edison Solutions.

The Bourne Board of Selectmen, at its September 30 meeting, had approved bringing the turbine parts down Main Street in Buzzards Bay, around Belmont Circle and onto Head of the Bay Road. The town has designated Head of the Bay Road a scenic road. Under local statute, prior consent from the planning board is required in the event of any “cutting or removal of trees, or the tearing down or destruction of stone walls, or portions thereof.”

Mr. Fitch told planning board members that project coordinators had measured the width of the road, and the height and width of the vehicles with the components loaded, relative to the tree canopy. He assured them that based on the calculations, there would be no damage done to the canopy, and no cutting of trees required.

“We know the size of the trucks, we know the size of the components and everything about it. This is all very carefully planned out,” he said.

Planning board chairman Christopher J. Farrell questioned what Mr. Fitch’s client would do if some accidental damage was done. Mr. Farrell said he was particularly concerned with Ingersoll’s Corner, where the canopy is at its lowest.

Mr. Fitch said there are remedies available if trees are damaged, and his client would be held accountable. He mentioned a $2 million bond that selectmen made part of an order of conditions when they approved transport of the turbines through town.

Selectmen also made their approval conditional on Department of Public Works director George M. Sala, in his role as town tree warden, being satisfied that the vehicles and their components would not damage the tree canopy on Head of the Bay Road.

Mr. Fitch said that Mr. Sala would be traveling the route the trucks will be taking on Head of the Bay Road Tuesday morning this week. Any misgivings Mr. Sala might have would be reported to the planning board, as well as Future Generation Wind, Mr. Fitch said.

Mr. Sala said that traveled Head of the Bay Road with the applicant’s representatives Tuesday morning. He said that there would not be any major damage done to the tree canopy. The trucks will be moving at a slow pace and straddling the road. In addition, workers will be situated along the route, holding up any branches that might be endangered, he said.

“It’s no different than hauling a boat,” he said.