Vineyard Wind received the first shipment of turbine components for its planned, 62-turbine offshore wind farm at the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal last week.
The first shipment arrived Thursday, May 25.
The tower sections — the base of the turbine that’s placed on top of a yellow transition piece — will be constructed at the terminal before being shipped out and installed later this summer.
“After a long road, the first day of component arrival is finally here,” Vineyard Wind CEO Klaus Moeller is quoted in a release announcing the arrival of the parts. “This is a great milestone for New Bedford, Vineyard Wind, and the country. We’ve been working together with [New Bedford Mayor Jon] Mitchell for years to achieve this, and are now finally seeing the result … This is only the first — much more is coming. And the vision of New Bedford at the epicenter of the offshore wind industry is coming to life today.”
Vineyard Wind says that towers will arrive in three sections. Once onshore, they will be staged at the terminal before being partially assembled, by union labor, and loaded onto a specialized barge. In all, Vineyard Wind says that approximately 100 union tradespeople will work on the site during the peak construction period.
A boat from Portugal called the UHL Felicity brought the parts from Portugal.
“Congratulations to Vineyard Wind, as well as the workers, local officials, businesses, and advocates who made this important milestone possible,” Gov. Maura Healey is quoted in the Vineyard Wind release. “The Vineyard Wind 1 project is an integral part of our efforts to make Massachusetts a global leader in offshore wind. Our administration looks forward to continuing to support this project and bringing clean, affordable energy to Massachusetts.”
Meanwhile, there is a work stoppage at the New Bedford waterfront, with reports from CAI radio in Woods Hole that the stoppage could delay further shipments and parts arriving in the city. Other unions on the waterfront have joined, and have stopped work. Longshoreman’s Union Local had a voicemail message saying on Wednesday that the work stoppage is still in effect, and they are still negotiating with Vineyard Wind.
The planned 800-megawatt project is located 15 miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. It’s expected to generate electricity for more than 400,000 homes and businesses in the state. Although it will not be fully built then, the project is expected to begin delivering energy to Massachusetts in 2023.