NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk officials will gather to discuss the fate of the former site of the Norwalk Harbor Power Station on Manresa Island later this month and are asking for the public’s input on the situation.
NRG Energy Inc., the plant’s owner, announced it would deactivate the power plant last May after more than 50 years in operation.
The oil-powered 340 megawatt plant was the only large-scale plant between Bridgeport and New York, according to NRG. But the company decided to shut down the site last summer, citing the high cost of oil compared with natural gas.
“We don’t take this action lightly, but market conditions in southwest Connecticut and in New England generally made this decision necessary,” NRG spokesman David Gaier said in May.
The site was once designated an Resource Conservation and Recovery Act Corrective Action plant by the Environmental Protection Agency, meaning it at one time had hazardous waste on the site. The plant had been working to correct the problem, and it has posted no violations in the past three years, according to the EPA’s records.
The plant sits on a 33-acre plot of land on Manresa Island, which is actually a peninsula on the shore of Long Island Sound. The power plant had been in operation there since 1960. NRG has owned the land and the plant since 1999, when it purchased it from Connecticut Light & Power.
NRG has not yet decided on its plans for the future of the Manresa Island site. Company representatives will be at a meeting with Mayor Harry Rilling, members of Norwalk’s Planning and Zoning commissions, Norwalk Senior Environmental Officer Alexis Cherichetti, State Sen. Bob Duff and other city and state officials to discuss the future of the location in a public setting.
“There has been a good deal of speculation and talk around town about what will happen to Manresa Island after the power plant shuts down,” Duff said in a press release. “I would encourage anyone who is curious about the future of the site to attend.”
The public information session is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec. 18, starting at 7 p.m. in the Community Room of the Norwalk Police Headquarters, 1 Monroe St.