Wind turbine project at Rock Run Recreation Area stalled | Business

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ST. LAWRENCE — A $200 million wind turbine project planned for the sprawling Rock Run Recreation property in Clearfield and Cambria counties has been delayed.

Originally slated to begin construction now, the project is still in the hands of the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, according to former state representative Gary Haluska, D-Patton. Haluska is chairman of the board of directors that oversees the ATV park located near the village of St. Lawrence.

Haluska said on Monday that the plans had been submitted to the DCNR and were not yet approved, and that a power contract had not yet been submitted.

“Survey crews have come here and the project is mapped out,” Haluska said in a phone interview. “We hope to get approval over the summer and start construction in the fall.”

According to DCNR spokeswoman Christina Novak, the agency is involved in the project because the state has a large amount of state funding for the acquisition and development of the Rock Run recreation area. Millions of public funds have been invested in the tract since March 2004.

“Competitive Power Ventures submitted a proposal to DCNR for a wind farm on portions of (Rock Run) in November 2021 with additional documentation in January 2022,” Novak said. “The wind farm will cause permanent surface impacts that will create a conversion of use.”

Novak explained that these surface impacts include wind turbine pads, foundations and laydown areas as well as substation/substation areas and above ground junction boxes.

“DCNR’s Office of Recreation and Conservation is actively working with the Cambria County Recreation and Conservation Authority and CPV throughout the conversion process,” Novak continued. “A formal response to CPV’s wind power proposal was provided on March 3 outlining the documentation needed to resolve the use conversion, including a survey and assessment of the proposed replacement land to be added to the recreation area. of Rock Run to mitigate usage conversion.

“Final approval for the conversion is contingent on receipt of final surveys for the conversion area and replacement land, and a replacement title deed that includes DCNR protective language,” Novak said.

In September 2021, the Clearfield County Planning Commission approved a three-lot subdivision in Chest Township for the installation of three wind turbines.

Competitive Power Ventures Rogue of Braintree, Mass. and Silver Springs, Md. plans to install 18 or 19 wind turbines at the Rock Run site in Clearfield and Cambria counties. Most of the project will be in Cambria County with up to three wind turbines and a substation located in Clearfield County, according to CPV’s John Haffner.

Construction was originally scheduled to begin in early 2022 and take approximately 14 months. The project is expected to create around 100 construction jobs and there would be half a dozen full-time maintenance staff employed at the site over the life of the facility.

Hafner said the turbines will look like other wind turbines in the region, except the new ones will be larger. The new turbines will be about 650 feet tall with rotors about 162 meters (531.5 feet) in diameter.

Parts for the wind turbines will be built around the world and transported to the site. He said they are still working out the details of how to get all the parts to the site, as many parts are large and heavy. For example, the rotor blades are 81 meters (265 feet) long, Hafner said.

The company will improve the existing roads and build some new roads for the wind turbines. He said the access roads will all be gravel roads and visitors to the Rock Run Recreation Area will be able to climb up to the turbines.

The total land area is 5,852 acres.

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