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Portland solar project expected to begin this year

Submitted Photo Pictured is a one of Abundant Solar Power projects in Bloomfield.

PORTLAND — Abundant Solar Power, Inc. (Abundant) is one step closer to constructing a 2.5 Megawatt Alternating Current (AC) solar array project in Portland following approval of incentives by the Board of Directors of the County of Chautauqua Industrial Development Agency (CCIDA) at its meeting Tuesday. The project will generate renewable solar energy for the Town of Portland and the surrounding communities within the New York Independent System Operator (NYSIO) Zone A District.

Abundant was formed in 2016 and is headquartered in Rochester, N.Y. The company is focused on community solar projects, meaning the power generated is typically consumed by households in the same utility load zone who desire to purchase green power but do not or cannot put solar panels on their own properties. Abundant develops and builds the community solar projects through its construction arm, Abundant Construction, and manages the sites long-term.

Mark Geise, Deputy County Executive for Economic Development and CEO of the CCIDA said, “Abundant has a track record of building successful projects throughout our region, and I’m glad we could help the community by supporting this project.”

According to Rachel Clar, Abundant Solar Power Director of Business Development-New York, the company has four solar array projects fully built and operating in the greater Rochester area, a fifth array under construction in Steuben County, and dozens of more projects under development that are in various stages of the permitting process.

“This is literally turning sunshine into tax revenue, into investor returns and obviously into green energy,” she said during the meeting Tuesday. “This is providing an essential service that will be needed forever.”

The solar project will be placed at 5771 Rt. 20 in the town of Portland. Legislator Mark Odell, R-Brocton, saw the site plan. “I will neve see this project, nor will anyone on Route 20. It’s up on berm, behind the berm, full enclosed. It’s a good site,” he said.

Portland Town Supervisor Dan Schrantz said, “The Town of Portland residents will benefit financially from the PILOT payments, as well be provided the opportunity to purchase green energy. There will also be over 40 full time equivalent constructions jobs during the five month construction period.”

Chautauqua County Executive P.J. Wendel said, “I am glad that the CCIDA could assist the Town of Portland with its desire to have this solar project in its community.”

Abundant Solar Power, Inc. expects to close on the 24 plus acre land purchase in the third quarter of 2020, with construction to begin at that time.

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