MEDWAY, Mass. - The town of Medway has a guaranteed revenue stream for the next 20 years - millions of dollars from a power company for the rights to expand an existing plant.
All residents will benefit, but some living directly near the facility feel they're getting a raw deal.
Medway town administrator Michael Boynton says that money will pay for all-day kindergarten, road and sidewalk improvements, and it's already bought public safety equipment like a dry chemical fire truck.
"This is a $79 million deal for the town over the next 20 years," said Boynton. "The town has a number of options and the board of selectmen has been extremely progressive about working on returning benefits directly to the town with those funds."
Just down the hill from the Exelon expansion would be the man-made hill. Seth Robertson's house, and a handful of others, back directly up to the construction.
"We didn't really know this was something going in here when we purchased the property. And what's happened here has happened so quickly that it's left us here with no options on what to do," said Robertson.
The plant expansion began last August and is schedule to be finished by the end of the year.
Robertson says the pace and place of construction has left the family reeling.
"This is a residential neighborhood, you know, there are houses everywhere. There are no businesses or even commercial businesses near here," said Robertson.
But many would argue there has been an existing power plant near here, for nearly 50 years, and transmission lines for even longer than that.
While the area may never have been exactly scenic, the old plant sat at the back of the parcel and it was lower to the ground, so from the street it wasn't exactly in your face.
The new facility is in Robertson's face, mainly because he's concerned for his family.
"We have four boys and we have another one on the way. And we're living under two massive smokestacks. So that's the scariest part for me," said Robertson.
The town of Medway has noted that homeowners abutting the project can apply for relief if they can prove their property values have been affected. In a statement, Exelon says it is a responsible neighbor and member of the Medway community:
"We are mindful it can be a challenge living near an active construction site and we are working hard to complete construction by the end of this year."
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