Expect a lot of traffic slowdowns on Highway 21 as wind turbines wind their way through the countryside to Huron County.
NextEra Energy will begin construction on the 37 industrial wind turbines for the Bluewater Energy Centre south east of Bayfield in late November according to NextEra spokesperson Josie Hernandez. And it will have an impact on Petrolia and Central Lambton County.
The transportation route for the 80-meter towers with winds its way from Windsor, along Oil Heritage Road, turning east on Petrolia Line. Recently, a transport with one piece of a tower stopped traffic at that corner for five minutes as it attempted to make the turn without damaging the traffic light standards.
Hernandez says the components of the 500,000 pound towers are brought to the site in pieces. In all, nine trucks are needed to carry one tower, including three for the 120-meter long blades.
With 37 towers being erected in the countryside around Bayfield, Hensall and Zurich, that means there will be 333 transports traveling from Windsor, through Lambton County to Huron over the next six to eight months.
“Generally construction lasts 4 to 6 months,” says Hernandez. “We anticipate the project to be fully operational by July 2014.”