SOMERSET — The iconic cooling towers at the Brayton Point power plant will be demolished in April.

According to the Herald News, at a town hall meeting Tuesday night in Somerset, representatives of Commercial Development Co., which now owns the former coal-fired facility, informed residents that the towers would be brought down by way of controlled demolition on April 27.

Stephen Collins, executive vice president of CDC, assured residents that the lower half of each cooling tower would be wrapped in chain-link fence as to minimize the spread of debris during the implosion.

The demolition, planned for the mid-morning hours of April 27, is prompting officials to block traffic on I-195 in the area of the cooling towers for about one hour. Traffic will be redirected onto Route 103.

The two 500-foot tall towers were constructed in 2009 at a cost of $600 million. Their purpose was to cool the extremely hot water from the plant before it was discharged into Mount Hope Bay.

Collins also announced that CDC will hold a raffle to determine who will press the detonator plunger to initiate the implosion on April 27. Raffle tickets for an opportunity to win that chance are being sold at $20 each. The proceeds of the raffle will benefit the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial Wall in Fall River.

Low electricity prices and the high costs of meeting environmental standards and maintaining the aging facility forced the closure of the Brayton Point plant in 2017. CDC is retrofitting the site to accommodate the production of offshore wind turbine components.

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