A special meeting has been scheduled on the proposed 500-megawatt solar facility in Spotsylvania County.

The meeting on the proposed facility was set by the Board of Supervisors for Feb. 5 at the Marshall Center. It will start at 4:30 p.m. and include presentations by county staff and the applicant, as well as public comments.

The Planning Commission is still considering the special-use permit for the proposal. The commission previously held two public hearings followed by another meeting earlier this month. Another meeting is set for Wednesday at 7 p.m., during which the commission is expected to make a recommendation to the supervisors on the permit.

The supervisor’s meeting is contingent upon the Planning Commission taking action on the permit.

The county has listed a slew of conditions aimed at addressing various key issues raised with the proposed solar facility.

Utah-based Sustainable Power Group, also known as sPower, wants to install approximately 1.5 million solar panels on several tracts of the 6,300-acre property. The solar farm, the largest such proposal in the U.S., would send energy into the electrical grid. The company already has agreements to sell the energy to Apple and Microsoft, as well as the University of Richmond.

Residents who live near the site have questioned the project, and in some cases have mounted an effort to oppose the proposal. Their concerns range from environmental and health risks to impacts on property values.

Officials with sPower have countered by saying science backs up their contentions that the project is safe and that it would prove beneficial to the county in various ways.

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Scott Shenk: 540/374-5436

sshenk@freelancestar.com