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Halifax County planners take up first solar request / November 20, 2017

The first utility-scale solar operation to come before the county for approval is the main item of business for the Halifax County Planning Commission Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Planners will hear comments on a conditional use permit application filed by Urban Grid Solar. The Maryland-based developer is seeking to build a 65-megawatt solar array on a 629-acre parcel of land in the Crystal Hill community. The permit is filed in the name of Crystal Hill Solar, LLC, an offshoot of Urban Grid Solar.

The company is also seeking to build another solar array next to the Alton Post Office, all part of a half-dozen announced solar projects in the county. A community meeting with residents to discuss the Alton project is set for Nov. 29.

Developers are required to hold the community meetings under Halifax County’s newly-enacted solar energy ordinance.

The Crystal Hill project becomes the first to go before the Planning Commission for consideration. On Monday, Dec. 4, the Halifax County Board of Supervisors is set to hold another public hearing to review the project. Supervisors will make the final decision on whether to issue conditional use permits for this and other solar farm installations.

Both public hearings — first the planners, then the supervisors — will be held in the upstairs meeting room at the Mary Bethune Office Complex in Halifax.

The Crystal Hill solar field is planned on a parcel on the south side of Crystal Hill Road (Route 610) near the intersection with Woodchuck Trail.

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