A New Jersey company is planning to construct a solar array at the Greater Binghamton Airport in the town of Maine.

Above Grid is seeking permission to build the electricity generation facility off Commercial Drive on about 30 acres at the south end of the airport property.

Mark Heefner, Broome County commissioner of aviation, said the solar farm would be situated below runway grade. He said there now is a mix of trees and open field at the proposed site of the installation.

Heefner said the facility would not pose a hazard to pilots using the airport.

Above Grid co-founder Joseph Tassone said the company is planning to build an approximately 6.3 megawatt solar array.

The county legislature next week is expected to vote on a proposed 25-year lease for the solar project. The company would pay $30,000 a year for use of the site. Above Grid would have an option to renew the lease for four additional five-year periods.

The company is expected to present details of the project to the town of Maine planning board next month.

Tassone said Above Grid's goal is to begin work on the solar array early next spring. He said it could become operational six months after the start of construction. The company has made an initial interconnect application with NYSEG.

Tassone said Above Grid will apply for state solar program incentives for the airport project.

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Contact WNBF News reporter Bob Joseph: bob@wnbf.com or (607) 545-2250. For breaking news and updates on developing stories, follow @BinghamtonNow on Twitter.

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