Polaris Wind Energy Center
Gratiot County, Michigan
- Elba, Hamilton, Lafayette, and North Star Townships
- 40,000 acres
- 68 turbines generating 168 MW
Metro Consulting Associates provided balance of plant design services along with extensive ecological consulting to facilitate development.
The team prepared site plans and preliminary engineering to minimize flood plain impact, bores, and crane teardowns along with a hydrology report to identify expected high-water elevations and velocities at the turbine locations.
The project required extensive agency coordination and permitting activities with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE), County Road Commission Office, Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), and County Drain Commissioner’s Office.
The firm’s ecological team completed wetland determinations for the total project area specific to turbine locations, collection lines, crane walks, and public road intersections. A general and individual EGLE permit application package was prepared for wetland, inland lake and streams, and floodplain impacts.
Additional ecological studies included a habitat assessment and threatened and endangered species (TES) survey for Blanding’s turtle, spotted turtle, eastern box turtle, Butler’s garter snake, and eastern massasauga rattlesnake with report submittal to EGLE and Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) Wildlife and Fisheries Division. Best management practices were incorporated into the construction plans to protect the various species from harm and “incidental take” during construction and restoration activities.