The developers of an offshore wind farm that is expected to make landfall at Smith Point have purchased a building in East Setauket to use as an operations and maintenance hub, they said.
Sunrise Wind partners Orsted, of Denmark, and Eversource, of New England, said they've already bought the building at 22 Research Way in East Setauket to support Sunrise Wind and related projects. The company also has committed to Port Jefferson as a port for a new service operations vessel for its New York projects.
Both locations are expected to employ a total of 100 people, the companies said in a release.
The nearly 60,000-square-foot East Setauket location will accommodate permanent staff working on the Sunrise Wind and South Fork Wind farms, which are 880 megawatt and 130 megawatt projects, company officials said, including technical, warehouse and management teams. It will be converted to contain office and warehouse space. It will feature solar panels, the companies said.
Mikkel Maehlisen, Orsted Offshore North America's head of operations, who will be based at the facility, in a statement said, "The deep-water harbor in Port Jefferson, combined with the talent pool and resources on Long Island, make the area ideally-suited to serve as a regional O&M hub for our Northeast offshore wind farms."
Brookhaven Supervisor Edward Romaine, in a statement, said he expects offshore wind to bring a "significant environmental and economic benefit to our town," including "good paying jobs that will spur investment in our Main Street business." Romaine last year suggested the notion of Smith Point as a landing spot for the Sunrise Wind cable, land-based route along William Floyd Parkway, Horseblock Road to the Long Island Expressway to a LIPA substation in Holtsville.
Assemb. Steve Englebright (D-Setauket), in the statement, noted that Long Island was "becoming the epicenter of offshore wind energy jobs and a model for the nation on how to protect the global atmosphere and ecosystem."
Fishermen who oppose the wind farms, including many on Long Island, argue that they will reduce their access to historical fishing grounds. The state and developers say the projects will be built with fishing interests in mind.