Randolph goes for solar
ASHEBORO — Randolph County is no stranger to solar farm development. The county has several solar farm projects in various stages of development, according to Hal Johnson, county planning director.
* Cary-based Green Tech Renewable Solutions built a solar farm along U.S. 220 Business at Leather Road. Seagrove Solar Field is located on 8.25 acres of previously unused farmland. It was built in four phases beginning in 2009. The company says on its website the facility has a 1 megawatt capacity.
* Strata Solar Development LLC is set to begin construction on 43.98 acres at 4477 Wall Brothers Road in New Market township for a larger solar farm with a capacity, upon completion, to generate enough electricity to power 600-700 average Carolina family homes for a year.
* On Monday, May 5, Randolph County commissioners will consider a request for a solar farm from Southwest Land LLC to rezone 32.32 acres at 3295 Archie Newsom Road in Richland township. The planning board reviewed the request April 8 and unanimously recommended it be approved.
Johnson said the county is in the process of reviewing a fourth request for a project located north of Randleman on Worthville Road.
The county also inherited a project approved by Asheboro City Council prior to the time when the city decided to shrink its extraterritorial jurisdiction (ETJ) and relinquish its control over zoning in that area. Soleil Energy Solutions was approved for zoning on an undeveloped 27.7-acre parcel west of town – on the south side of U.S. 64 about 420 feet west of Three B Road. In 2012, the company told city leaders officials they wanted to invest $10 million in a facility.
That development has not begun. Efforts to reach the company were unsuccessful.