In a cooperative arrangement with the city of Salem and Crowley Maritime Corp., Vineyard Wind has secured a large parcel of land on Salem Harbor for use as an offshore wind port. The main plan for the real estate is for building and staging the Commonwealth Wind Project, a Vineyard Wind venture. The land was previously the site of Salem Harbor Generating Station, a coal-fired power station. It presently hosts a smaller, gas-fired power station.
“Under the terms of the proposed agreement, Crowley Maritime Corp., through its New Energy subsidiary Crowley Wind Services, will purchase the 42 acres surrounding Salem Harbor Station, currently owned by a subsidiary of Footprint Power LLC, and will serve as the long-term offshore wind port operator for the site,” a release states. “Vineyard Wind’s partners (Avangrid Renewables and CIP) will serve as the port’s anchor tenants, utilizing the property for the Commonwealth Wind project as well as other projects in the company’s portfolio.”
Like Vineyard Wind’s projects Vineyard Wind 1 and Park City Wind, Commonwealth Wind will be located in an area of the Atlantic south of Martha’s Vineyard, according to Vineyard Wind spokesperson Andrew Doba. The project is in its early stages of permitting. Following New Bedford, the Salem harborside site would be the second major offshore wind port in Massachusetts.
Vineyard Wind expects the port will create a large number of jobs. “As offshore wind continues to expand, new, purpose-built ports will be key to the success of this industry,” Vineyard Wind CEO Lars Pedersen said through a release. “By constructing the nation’s first purpose-built offshore wind port in New Bedford, Massachusetts has been leading the way. With a new offshore wind port in Salem, the commonwealth can ensure that it is ready to face the demands of a rapidly growing industry. With both New Bedford and Salem capable of delivering port operations needed for offshore wind, the state can ensure that both the South Coast and the North Shore can benefit from the creation of new, highly skilled, and good-paying jobs, something that will cement Massachusetts’ position as a leader in the new and growing offshore wind industry.”
“This partnership reinforces Crowley’s position as a total life-cycle service provider in the offshore wind sector,” Jeff Andreini, vice president, Crowley New Energy, said. “We look forward to working with Vineyard Wind and the city of Salem and providing the highest level of service in order to make Salem Harbor a leading provider in the offshore wind supply chain.”
On the Vineyard, the Martha’s Vineyard Commission recently closed its hearing on a proposed operations and maintenance facility for offshore wind that will be located on Vineyard Haven Harbor. If passed and built, the facility is expected to support several offshore wind jobs. A number of Vineyard students are in an offshore wind technician certificate program held by ACE MV, many in anticipation of the jobs expected from the Vineyard Haven facility.