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Public learns of traffic impact for wind farm construction

The Tribune|L. Parsons|September 15, 2022
ArizonaImpact on Landscape
Last week, Winslow residents were invited to take part in a presentation and discussion about the traffic impact of shipping materials to the Chevlon Butte Wind Farm, located south of Winslow. Interim City Manager David Coolidge was joined by John Welch of Lonestar Transportation and Matt Mouree of Atlas Pathfinder, the two groups coordinating the transport of windmill components to the wind farm site, to inform the public of the multitude of over sized trucks that will be traveling through Winslow.

Last week, Winslow residents were invited to take part in a presentation and discussion about the traffic impact of shipping materials to the Chevlon Butte Wind Farm, located south of Winslow.
 
Interim City Manager David Coolidge was joined by John Welch of Lonestar Transportation and Matt Mouree of Atlas Pathfinder, the two groups coordinating the transport of windmill components to the wind farm site, to inform the public of the multitude of over sized trucks that will be traveling through Winslow.
 
Beginning Monday, Sept. 26, and continuing for approximately 15 weeks, the companies will move material for 72 windmills. Each windmill consists of five tower sections, three blades, one nacelle, one drive train and one hub equaling 11 trucks per windmill. A windmill will be completed each day, Monday through Friday excluding weekends and holidays. They will also be transporting materials in a way that will allow school bus routes to run at regularly scheduled times and with as little interference as possible, according to Coolidge.
 
The components will come ... more [truncated due to possible copyright]
     
Last week, Winslow residents were invited to take part in a presentation and discussion about the traffic impact of shipping materials to the Chevlon Butte Wind Farm, located south of Winslow.
 
Interim City Manager David Coolidge was joined by John Welch of Lonestar Transportation and Matt Mouree of Atlas Pathfinder, the two groups coordinating the transport of windmill components to the wind farm site, to inform the public of the multitude of over sized trucks that will be traveling through Winslow.
 
Beginning Monday, Sept. 26, and continuing for approximately 15 weeks, the companies will move material for 72 windmills. Each windmill consists of five tower sections, three blades, one nacelle, one drive train and one hub equaling 11 trucks per windmill. A windmill will be completed each day, Monday through Friday excluding weekends and holidays. They will also be transporting materials in a way that will allow school bus routes to run at regularly scheduled times and with as little interference as possible, according to Coolidge.
 
The components will come from their manufacturing point by Apache Railway and be unloaded near Snowflake. The trucks will then travel from Snowflake to Winslow on Interstate 40, exiting on Transcon Lane. The trucks will continue west to Third Street to the overpass on the west end of Winslow. From there, they will turn onto Coopertown Road, traveling east towards State Route 87. Once on 87, they will continue to State Route 99 South to the Chevlon Butte site.
 
Residents can expect very large trucks, some nearing 267 feet long and some weighing as much as 254,000 pounds.
 
Some attendees of the presentation expressed concerns. Francis McCauley, of Dyna Rock and Sand, a gravel company that operates near the Chevlon Butte site and travels the same route with their trucks said, “Have you taken into consideration the other large vehicles that use 99? Will there be accommodations made to make sure we can continue to move our products?”
 
Welch responded, “While our loads will be long and heavy, they are not more than 15 feet wide. There should be room to pass with no issue. That said, we will also have plenty of escort from law enforcement so we will make sure there is opportunity for other vehicles to move through the area. Also, we will not be traveling in a convoy so there will be breaks between loads that will also allow movement by other vehicles.”
 
Another concern, brought forth by resident Richard Larson was the impact the heavy traffic will have on the roadways and potentially homes on the route due to the vibration caused by the oversized loads. “Who will pay to fix the streets and the buildings if there is damage caused by this operation?”
 
Coolidge responded, saying, “We plan to take aerial photos of the roadways both before and after the trucks complete their movement. However, as far as who may be financially responsible for any damage, that is a conversation we need to have with the ownership of Chevlon Butte Wind Farm and probably others. It is a good question, and it is a conversation we will continue to have.”
 
Winslow Public Works Director Tim Westover added, “We will also be monitoring and making repairs in real time. We will be keeping track and calculating costs of manpower and materials.”
 
Coolidge concluded the informational meeting by saying, “This is quite an undertaking and they are going to try to minimize chaos and disruption as best they can.”
 
Citizens can contact City Hall at 928-289-1416 with other questions.
 
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