For more than a year, residents in the Norvalia subdivision have been waiting for equipment to start rolling through their neighborhood, carrying solar panels and tools to install them in an old farm field.
But the neighborhood is still quiet, with no further development since the project’s special use permit was approved by the James City County Board of Supervisors in January 2018.
James City County Planning Director Paul Holt said the developer, SunPower Devco LLC, has not filed any new applications for a site plan documents since the permit was approved.
Without filing those documents and getting the plans approved, SunPower cannot begin construction, Holt noted.
SunPower did not return multiple requests for comment.
The California-based company first proposed to settle a 20-megawatt solar farm on the 224-acre stretch of farmland on Richmond Road in November 2016.
The farm would be the first large-scale solar farm in the county, generating enough electricity to power roughly 4,000 homes using roughly 820 ground-mounted panels.
SunPower has planned to sell the power generated by the farm to Dominion Energy.
In January 2018, SunPower Senior Manager of Business Development Peter Toomey said three things need to happen before construction can begin: Sunpower needs an interconnection agreement from Dominion, a contract with Dominion to sell the power and proper permits from Virginia authorities.
Dominion spokeswoman Bonita Harris said Thursday Dominion could not confirm whether it is or isn’t involved in the project.
She said confidentiality agreements prevent Dominion from disclosing any specific information about any projects until transactions are complete and agreed upon by all parties.
Last year, Dominion committed to seeking additional renewable energy through solar and wind power under Virginia’s Grid Transformation & Security Act.
“We are still actively reviewing solar proposals across Virginia in order to meet our 3000 MW commitment,” Harris said.