Advertisements

Iconic New Jersey Smokestack Imploded, Making Way for Offshore Wind Energy Hub

by Anna

For decades, travelers on their way to New Jersey’s beach destinations, such as Ocean City and Cape May, were greeted by the towering smokestack of the B.L. England Generating Station as they cruised along the Garden State Parkway. This 463-foot-tall (141.1-meter) stack was more than just an industrial landmark; it served as an unintentional weather vane, guiding residents in deciding what to wear based on the direction and speed of emissions blowing from its top.

Advertisements

However, the power plant’s legacy came to an end in May 2019 when it ceased operations, succumbing to the global shift away from fossil fuels. Now, this iconic smokestack, the last significant remnant of the plant, is set to be imploded at 10 a.m. EDT on Thursday, courtesy of a demolition company renowned for bringing down the former Trump Plaza casino in nearby Atlantic City in 2021.

Advertisements

The demolition marks a significant step in the transformation of the site, located on Great Egg Harbor Bay, as it prepares to play a crucial role in New Jersey’s renewable energy landscape. The former power plant’s location, already connected to the electrical grid, presents a valuable opportunity to link several of the state’s planned offshore wind farms to the onshore power system.

One such wind farm, developed by energy company Orsted, will have a cable coming ashore on a beach in Ocean City. The cable will run underground along a roadway right-of-way before re-entering the bay’s waters and ultimately connecting to the grid at the former B.L. England site.

The project, and the specific route it will follow, has met resistance from Ocean City residents and other Jersey Shore communities. Opposition has manifested in both legal battles and public discourse as locals contend with the changes associated with transitioning from a coal and oil-burning power plant to an offshore wind energy hub.

The B.L. England Generating Station, established in 1961, has gradually undergone deconstruction, with the demolition of a cooling tower in September 2022 and the removal of boilers in April.

The current owner of the property, Beesley’s Point Development Group, a New York-based company with expertise in redeveloping “distressed” heavy industrial sites, is preparing to embark on this new chapter in the site’s history, which will contribute to New Jersey’s renewable energy aspirations and the global push for cleaner energy sources.

Advertisements
Advertisements

You may also like

Copyright © 2023 ourmechanicalcenter.com