GORHAM — The Planning Board Monday took a virtual visit via drone video of the site proposed for a 30-acre solar farm in a hayfield off Fort Hill Road.

The project is proposed by Gorham Solar, LLC, a subsidiary of Boston-based Nexamp. The company is seeking the Planning Board’s favorable review of the project by June 11 so it can meet a Maine Public Utilities Commission deadline and secure a long-term contract to provide solar energy to CMP customers.

The Planning Board voted unanimously 7-0 during its Zoom meeting to postpone its review to June 1 pending receiving more information, including the aesthetics of a fence to shield the view for two abutters.

“I think the project has a lot of merit,” Planning Board member Tom Hughes said.

No one from the public called into the meeting.

Ben Axelman, manager of solar development at Nexamp, said power produced at the solar array will tie into the grid through a three-phase power line to the electrical substation on an adjacent property at 412 Fort Hill Road. The array will provide power for 900 homes.


The solar panels will rotate, tracking the sun during the day, and they will be monitored online.

Before the solar farm is operational, the company will conduct training for first responders, Gorham police and firefighters.

Christopher Ryan of Meridian Associates in Massachusetts walked Planning Board members through a virtual tour of the site from a video taken from a drone.

Bushes will provide buffering and a stockade-style fence also may be installed for the nearest two abutters. Farm-type, wire fencing with wooden posts will be installed on the perimeter of the property.

The project will generate no waste on site and will not have lighting, a septic system or water.

Residents who subscribe to the solar project would receive a reduction on their power bills.

The company has a 20-year lease on the property from Norman A. Martin III with an option of extension.

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