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Sunderland to make decision on solar farms

SUNDERLAND — The Board of Selectmen will decide on Monday whether to move forward with a Boston developer’s plans to build the town’s first solar farm.

Broadway Electrical has proposed two solar farms, at the Sunderland Elementary School and the town’s public safety complex. At the school, the developer proposes a ground-mounted array that would produce 450,361 kilowatt hours on an annual rate. At the public safety complex, Broadway Electrical proposes an array that would produce 507,679 kilowatt hours.

Following two public forums, the board will decide whether to schedule a special town meeting for residents to approve the solar farms.

The town originally opened the doors to solar projects when it approved a new bylaw last April. The bylaw requires a special permit and a site plan review for arrays over 1,000 square feet and places a height limit of 15 feet. Roof-mounted solar arrays and ground-mounted arrays under 1,000 square feet are allowed by right.

Broadway Electrical is in the process of installing or has installed over 66 megawatts of solar energy in the state. Past projects include a 396-kilowatt project for Leicester public buildings and a large 49,371-kilowatt facility for Cape and Vineyard Electric in the eastern part of the state.

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. in the Town Hall. It is not a public forum.

You can reach Kathleen McKiernan at:
kmckiernan@recorder.com
or 413-772-0261 ext. 268

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