solarhybrid AG is continuing its successful strategy of developing land at former military airports in Germany for the use for solar power plants. Following the completion of eight projects with a total capacity of 218 MWp on former airports in 2010 and 2011, the largest location to date with a planned capacity of 150 MWp is currently being developed.
Airport Development A/S, which also operates the Magdeburg-Cochstedt Airport in Saxony-Anhalt, is entering into partnership with solarhybrid AG for the second time following the successfully completed Fürstenwalde project. 340 ha of the over 700 ha site will be leased long term to sohy Neuhardenberg GmbH & Co. KG, a wholly-owned subsidiary of solarhybrid AG. This special purpose company will, under the lead of solarhybrid AG, carry out and finance the project development.
Airport Development A/S has taken the decision to lease out much of the site for the construction of a PV power plant as the airport shall not be used for charter and scheduled flights or as an alternative to the new Berlin-Brandenburg Airport. Therefore the land-use planning and planning permission procedure has been started. The go-ahead for this procedure was provided when the preliminary planning approval for the land-use plan and the development plan was given by Fürstenwalde municipal council on December 14, 2011. It is planned that the site will be ready for construction by the end of July 2012 and that the connection to the grid will take place in December 2012.
The feasibility of the project was examined thoroughly; the extremely flat site is free of vegetation and ideally suited, it has the characteristics required for conversion due to its many years of military use. Part of the site, like in the FinowTower project, will continue to be used for flights with a shortened runway.
solarhybrid AG is also relying on the active support of Airport Development S/A, which is actively involved as the partner on site throughout the approval phase. The photovoltaics use represents only part of the overall concept. Airport Development aims to create the largest and most important location in Europe for renewable energies where, in addition to the PV power plant, the generation of power and heat from biomass, wood and wind is to be developed.
The Neuhardenberg location will also become the new home of solarhybrid AG’s O&M department. The newly-formed solarhybrid Operations & Maintenance GmbH will soon move into its offices and warehouse at the site. In addition to the operation and maintenance of the Neuhardenberg solar power plant, the location is ideally suited for providing services in the surrounding areas for the power plants that have already been built. Therefore in addition to the investment of ca. € 280 million for the solar power plant, jobs will also be created in Neuhardenberg.