CHESHIRE -- A second private developer is eyeing the town as a potential site for a solar array.
Seth Ginsberg, president of Apis Energy Group LLC out of Great Barrington, said at Tuesday’s Selectmen’s meeting he’s considering 10 acres of property off North State Road for a new development.
The property is owned by David Krutiak, and Ginsberg told Selectmen he planned to attend a Planning Board meeting scheduled for Monday, Aug. 27, to inquire further about the property and gauge the board’s response to his plans.
According to Apis’ website, Ginsberg is a Fairfield University alumni with more than 25 years experience in construction and development. Ginsberg also has extensive experience in renewable and green energy developments.
A prior proposal for a solar array in town met some strong opposition from residents back in March. The Planning Board eventually voted down the proposal at a meeting on Tuesday, March 27.
The proponent then was Dominick Villane of Dalton, who had lobbied for permission to put down a 1,500- to 1,700-panel array between Fisher Hill and Wilshire Drive. Residents of the neighborhood were instrumental in turning the tide against the proposal.
Tuesday’s meeting also saw Selectmen receive five bids from contractors to take on the remaining downstream culvert replacement at Thunder Brook.
Northern Construction LLC, of Weymouth, bid at $152,600; A
Despite being the low bidder, A Martins and Sons has recently upset many in town government due to the conduct of work at Furnace Hill Road, where the contractor is engaged in an ongoing water main replacement project.
"It’s the worst construction project I’ve seen since becoming involved with the town," Selectwoman Carol Frances coni said at the meeting.
The Thunder Brook dam removal project has been in the works for more than four years, funded by a variety of state and ecological groups, plus in-kind service from town employees. So far, the dam has been removed, alleviating liability risks for the town and bettering the ecosystem there. The Highway Department performed all the work to this point, saving the town from what otherwise would have been an estimated $140,000 bill from a contractor.
Town Highway Super intendent Peter Lefebvre said similar savings could have been enjoyed in this second part of the project if not for new federal and state standards for stream crossing projects.
"It’s a very expensive endeavor for towns or anyone else who wants to put a culvert in a stream," Lefebvre said.
The project will be awarded by Selectmen next Tuesday.
A vacancy on the town Council on Aging has opened and Francesconi said anyone interested in filling it can contact Selectmen or visit Town Hall.