Court supports New Haven solar farm

NEW HAVEN — Almost two years after Cross Pollination Inc. proposed one of the state’s largest solar power installations, it finally has a solid green light to build it.
Last July, the Vermont Public Service Board (PSB) issued the Burlington-based firm a certificate of public good to erect a 2.2-megawatt solar farm off Route 7 at the Open View Farm in New Haven. The idea behind this solar farm is to integrate solar energy with agriculture. As proposed, the farm’s fixed solar panels would be integrated with a livestock and vegetable farm. The swath of solar arrays would supply enough annual energy to power roughly 77 percent of New Haven’s 650 homes.
But after the PSB OK’d the project, New Haven resident John Madden filed a motion for reconsideration to the PSB on the grounds that the project would ruin the aesthetics of the region. The PSB denied Madden’s motion, and he took his case to the Vermont Supreme Court. On April 12, the court issued a decision siding with the PSB, which read: “The record supports the Board’s general finding that the Project will not have an undue adverse effect on the aesthetics of the land.”
Madden then filed a motion for reconsideration to the Supreme Court. But on June 4, the court blocked that motion, writing: “Because this newest motion raises the same issues already considered and rejected in appellant’s appeal and motion to reargue, we conclude there is no basis for further relief.”
“We’re glad that we’re finally able to move forward with our project,” Cross Pollination President Paul Lekstutis said on Monday.
Lekstutis and company are hoping to begin building this summer, but they’re still ironing out some of the project’s specifics.
Reporter Andrew Stein is at [email protected].

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