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Iberdrola suspends local application for Clayton wind farm, will seek an Article X process instead

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CLAYTON — A year later, the developer of Horse Creek Wind Farm is readying itself for another shot at the proposed project in Clayton under Article X.

In a recent letter to Clayton’s Planning Board, Atlantic Wind LLC, a subsidiary of Iberdrola Renewables Inc., said it is suspending its application with the local Planning Board because its “ability to develop the project will be enhanced by proceeding under the state of New York’s new Article X review process before the state Department of Environmental Conservation.”

Article X of the 2011 Power NY Act expedites the approval process of electric-generating facilities of 25 megawatts or higher and gives a state siting board the authority to override local zoning laws.

Clayton Supervisor Justin A. Taylor said that while the town does not have a problem with Iberdrola seeking an Article X process, it certainly hopes the developer “will strongly take into consideration our town of Clayton ordinance, and our setbacks and decibel limits.”

The Horse Creek project had been put on hold last year following zoning changes adopted by the Clayton Town Council last August.

Iberdrola at that time stated it would not remove the local application but would be “going back to the drawing board” to tinker with the designs again.

The developer initially sought a 62-turbine, 130-megawatt project in a 2005 environmental review, but downsized it last year, proposing instead a 96-megawatt wind farm with 48 turbines.

The Spanish energy giant had leased 9,450 acres of land in the southeastern part of Clayton for the proposed project.

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