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Wind farm impact study accepted

ARKWRIGHT – According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the town of Arkwright, as lead agency, has accepted a final environmental impact statement on the proposed Arkwright Summit Wind Farm. The final EIS is available from the Arkwright Town Hall, 9543 Center Road, Fredonia, NY 14063.

The action involves the proposed Arkwright Summit Wind Farm, which is a planned wind energy generation facility that will reportedly include 36 wind turbines, with a total anticipated nameplate generating capacity of 78.4 megawatts.

While the state has accepted the final EIS, there are still hurdles that need to be overcome for the project to be finalized. The main hurdle is the host agreement, which still has some points that are being negotiated.

“It is very nice that the state has finally approved the project but we are still negotiating the host agreement,” Supervisor Frederick Norton said. “If we don’t have a satisfactory host agreement we won’t be taking any action. We are down to the last few points but they are important.”

The tallest wind turbines presently being considered for the project are the Vestas V-110 wind turbines, with a total height of 150 meters (492 feet). In addition to the turbines, the project will include construction and operation of a permanent meteorological tower, approximately 12.5 miles of gravel access roads, 18 miles of underground electrical collection lines and communication cables, an operations and maintenance facility, an overhead generator lead line up to 5.9 miles long and a substation and associated point of interconnection switchyard.

In addition to the permanent components of the project, the project will require a temporary laydown yard and construction work space.

In December, the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency stated the wind farm was seeking financial assistance, “(…) including potential exemptions or partial exemptions from sales and use taxes, mortgage recording taxes and real property taxes.”

CCIDA Chief Financial Officer Richard Dixon went on to say that the next step in the process was for Arkwright to accept the final EIS, and at that point the IDA could begin to move forward.

The Arkwright Town Board will next meet on Monday at 7:30 p.m. at the town hall.