Articles filed under Zoning/Planning from Illinois
Orion Renewable Energy Group plans to start construction on the $150 million to $170 million wind farm, the first in Knox County, this year and hopes to have it operational by the end of 2021.
Fifty concerned landowners showed up at the Albany Fire Station in Whiteside County on Feb. 10, sharing fears of loss of land values and quality of life when a wind farm is built in agricultural neighborhoods. Eric Smith has leased 225 acres between Kennedy, Stone, Archer, and Benson roads to Gipper Wind Farm, a division of Scout Clean Power LLC of Colorado. A tower has been constructed to determine if there is enough velocity to power 75-125 generators (turbines).
On Thursday night, the ZBA rejected the special-use permit by a 5-1 vote after 17 nights of testimony from Tradewind Energy and opponents of the proposed Alta Winds Farm project for the 12,000-acre project in Barnett, Wapella and Clintonia townships. The permit will be forwarded to the county board but a date on when the board will consider the permit has not yet been announced.
The board will not accept applications for special use permits for about 18 months while commissioners revise the ordinance, board Chairman Robert Elmore said.
A proposed wind farm on the Mississippi River bluffs near Valmeyer has been the subject of much debate since last summer. The most recent development occurred Aug. 19, when the Monroe County Board approved a moratorium on wind farms.
Last December, seven of the 12 board members indicated they would support a turbine setback of 2,250 feet from property lines to protect nonparticipating residents from the nuisances turbines can create, such as noise or shadow flicker, or the dangers associated with turbines catching fire or breaking. During a meeting of the board’s zoning committee on Monday night, however, two board members said they feel such a setback should only apply to residential land, not nonresidential properties.
Apex Clean Energy has proposed constructing 80 to 120 wind turbines in rural Morgan County for the Lincoln Land Wind project, but was waiting on updates to a Morgan County ordinance that came Monday. The Morgan County commissioners approved an updated ordinance addressing wind farms after more than a year of work on details of the regulation.
The new ordinance increases setbacks from 1,000 feet from a house’s foundation to 1,650 feet from the foundation of the home of a non-participating landowner and 1,320 feet from the foundation of the house of a participating landowner. ...“It’s disappointing,” said Mike Woodyard, who has been advocating for larger setbacks from the property line. “It’s a sad day when our county board refuses to recognize the rights of a property owner at the property line.”
But the recent changes did include increased cost estimates for dismantling of the complex if it ceases operation. The company agreed to increase the dollar amount of the decommissioning performance bond and bear any additional costs of chemical application incurred by farmers who are not leasing land to EDP. Munson said some crop dusting contractors refuse to fly within a wind farm. Others will, but only at additional cost, he added.
Faced with mammoth amounts of information — studies, reports, comments from citizens — the Douglas County Board has pushed back a final vote on whether to let a wind farm set up shop. The board was scheduled to rule Monday on Texas-based EDP Renewables' application to build the Harvest Ridge Wind Farm in Newman and Murdock townships.
CLINTON — A $300 million wind farm will not be coming to DeWitt County. The DeWitt County Board voted 6-5 with one abstention Thursday night against a special-use permit from Tradewind Energy. The vote was taken after a two-hour meeting before a crowd of about 300 people at Clinton High School. Previously, the county's Zoning Board of Appeals and Regional Planning Commission also rejected the plan.
Speakers addressed possible mechanical failures with wind turbines; noise; “shadow flickers” from turbine blades and other health effects; karst geology in the bluffs; other environmental issues such as wildlife and groundwater; property values; roads and other infrastructure; and “setbacks,” the required distances between turbines and homes, other structures and roadways. “There are too many what-ifs (with the current ordinance) to protect the taxpayers and the residents of our county,” said Rich Harsey, 47, of rural Waterloo.
The DeWitt County Zoning Board of Appeals voted to recommend the DeWitt County Board reject the proposal of Tradewind Energy's Alta Farms II Wind Project in the northwest corner of DeWitt County at a special meeting of the ZBA at Clinton High School Tuesday night.
Members of the DeWitt County Board will be in the hot seat next month after the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) voted Tuesday to recommend the county deny a special use permit for the Alta Farms wind energy project. The ZBA voted 5-1 to send the matter to the full board for final consideration with a recommendation to not grant the permit.
Some Douglas County residents will travel to Springfield on Thursday in hopes of testifying about proposed legislation clarifying zoning rules concerning wind farms. Specifically, the bill aims to officially establish that county wind-farm regulations would supersede township rules even in counties that have no zoning regulations.
GIBSON CITY — The more-restrictive setbacks and other new regulations for wind farms currently under consideration by the Ford County Board could make it “extremely difficult, if not impossible,” for Apex Clean Energy to build its proposed 250-megawatt Ford Ridge Wind Farm in the Gibson City and Sibley areas, a company representative said Thursday. However, J.J. Stone, a project manager for the Charlottesville, Va.-based firm, said that even if the board approves the new rules, a smaller version of the wind farm could still be built.
Opposing sides for a proposed wind farm in DeWitt County say they are prepared for up to 35 hours of scheduled meetings before the Zoning Board of Appeals, beginning Tuesday night at Clinton High School. “It’s going to be a long month,” said Andrea Rhoades, a rural DeWitt County resident who opposes the project.
With 10 of its 12 members present, the board voted 9-1 in favor of a proposal to restrict wind turbines from being built any closer than 2,250 feet from a property line. The measure, part of a larger package of ordinance revisions that will be up for approval once finalized, is designed to protect rural residents from the low-frequency noise and shadow flicker, among other nuisances, that turbines can create.
Ford County Board members spent two hours Thursday debating how to protect rural residents living around wind farms from nuisances that can be caused by wind turbines, such as low-frequency noise and shadow flicker.
The Regional Planning Commission voted 3-1 with two abstentions Tuesday night against a positive recommendation after Lenexa, Kan.-based Tradewind Energy Inc. laid out its case for the first wind farm in DeWitt County. The commission is charged with deciding if a proposed project meets the goal of the county's comprehensive plan. The Zoning Board of Appeals will also make a recommendation and forward it to the DeWitt County Board for a final vote.