, Salem, MA

May 16, 2013

Board OKs smokestack demolition at Salem power plant


---- — SALEM — The Historical Commission last night approved a request by Salem Harbor Station to demolish seven oil tanks and a 250-foot smokestack.

Footprint Power, the plant owner, asked for a waiver of the city’s demolition delay ordinance so it can begin work this summer. A plant representative said they will start in July or August and continue through the winter.

The power plant had to go before the Historical Commission, which normally rules on paint colors and window trim on historic homes, because seven of its steel tanks and a brick chimney are more than 50 years old, which triggers a review of a demolition request.

In all, the plant is removing 11 oil tanks, but four are newer and don’t require board approval.

The tallest stacks at the plant, which are still in use, will come down after the current coal and oil-fired power plant shuts down next May, an official said.

Footprint has filed plans to build a natural gas power plant, which is slated to open in June 2016.

Tom Dalton can be reached at