Wind developers snap up Huron Township homes

By Barb McKay, The Independent

Four homes affected by the Ripley Wind Project have been purchased by wind energy developers, and are slated to be put back on the market.

One property on Concession 2, another on Concession 4 and two on Concession 6 inHuronTownshipwere purchased by Suncor/Acciona, which developed the 76 megawatt wind power project, March 16. Land transfer documents were obtained by HALT (Huron-Kinloss Against Lakeside Turbines) president Mac Serra. The documents state that Alejandro Salvador Armendariz, manager of Acciona Wind Energy and Christina Ellerbeck, manager of marketing and business development for Suncor, acted on behalf of the purchaser, a numbered company – 2270573 Ontario Inc.

“The idea was to buy them and remarket them,” said Paul Austin, community relations officer for Acciona Wind Energy.

Austinsaid the company went through a period of consultation and testing of the properties with the Grey Bruce Health Unit and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment.

“No link between the wind power project and the health concerns of the residents was discovered,” he said.

However, the residents of the properties continued to insist that their health was being impacted, saidAustin.

“It was agreed that the only solution that could be reached was to purchase the properties,” he said. “It was in the best interest of the homeowners, the developers and the community to purchase the homes at fair market value. It was a mutual agreement.”

Austinsaid the purchase of the properties demonstrates Suncor and Acciona’s commitment to work with residents and the community.

Huron-Kinloss mayor Mitch Twolan said Suncor had informed him of the sales prior to the land transfers, and told him they would be back on the market, but he wasn’t given a reason as to why they were being purchased.

“It makes you very curious,” he said, adding that some residents feel they have no choice but to sell their homes.

David Colling, a Ripley-area resident and citizen member on the Inter-Municipal Wind Turbine Working Group, said he will be interested to see at what price the homes are listed at when they go back on the market. He said he has received a number of phone calls from residents living in areas where wind projects are slated to be developed.

“People call me and ask, ‘What should I do?’” he said. “I say sell and leave now before you lose the value of your home.”

Austinsaid full disclosure will be provided for why the homes were purchased when they are go up for sale.

“We want to be as transparent as possible about the process,” he said.

7 thoughts on “Wind developers snap up Huron Township homes

  1. More like it demonstrates their commitment to robbing people of their land.

  2. My heart goes out to these people.
    A new meaning to NIMBY –
    Next It Might Be You
    I dread the day it might be me.

  3. The IWT situation has already produced displaced persons and the more turbines that are installed the more displaced people there will be.

    Emotional issues are sure to arise as well when people are displaced fom their homes whether or not they receive fair market value for their property. A home to many people means more than just money.

    Situations such as this can lead to some very un-welcome social problems.

  4. It is time for home owners to challenge MPAC about their assessments, when it is clear that the introduction of industrial lighting, noise, shadow etc. is clearly reducting the land and resale value.

    MPAC is currently fighting on Wolfe Island to try to prove that placing a home within 86 mega-turbines doesn’t affect the home’s value. It is very much the little guy against the giants. Let’s hope the Kenney’s keep their humour as they demonstrate the emperor has no clothes!

    • From experience, in dealing with MPAC,
      the onus is on you to prove property
      devaluation. Proof in the pudding for
      them is for you to show that property
      values in your immediate area have
      declined and hence your property is
      worth less than the assessment. Quite
      hard to prove when property around
      IWT’s is not marketable.
      I have a friend in real estate, who has
      several lots listed near a proposed IWT
      site. As soon as any prospective
      customer is informed of the potential
      IWT development, they do not want to
      look at the lots at any price. Have the
      value of the lots been impaired? Logically,
      yes. Can you prove this devaluation to
      MPAC? No.

  5. I cannot imagine how devastating this must be. Money doesn’t replace your dreams of creating your home. It is not just a house or building it is your home and for many it has been transferred down through several generations. I have heard about several people who have asked for reassessments.
    Do you know of anybody who is tracking this process and how many potential purchases have fallen through because turbines may be coming. A joint data base could be useful to several people in the same situation. The turbines do not have to be erected yet to have the property lose value.

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