Articles filed under Zoning/Planning from Pennsylvania
In a letter delivered late Monday to the county's Office of Planning, Zoning and Community Development, Gary Altman asked the county to order Iberdrola Renewables of Portland to stop operating approximately 22 wind turbines in its South Chestnut Wind Project near Farmington. Altman contends the turbines don't comply with a number of conditions set by the county's zoning hearing board in 2009, including setbacks, decommissioning bonds, noise levels and measures to protect bats.
The board voted 3-0 to reject EDF’s application, but two of the five members abstained f...The township’s planning commission determined that the wind turbines were not compatible with other permitted uses in the zoning districts and the site plan that the company submitted wasn’t specific enough to comply with requirements.
A community in Luzerne County is celebrating a victory after a company wanting to build wind turbines there was denied its application. Wednesday night Foster Township officials voted against the company's request to install three wind farms in the area near Hazleton.
Supervisors approved an amendment to the township zoning ordinance on Monday night which regulates wind energy facilities and small scale windmills. The amendment addresses maximum height of the turbines, minimum height of the turbine hub from the ground, setbacks, lighting, and security issues.
"We're being told that a 50-story structure somehow is not going to be obtrusive and is not going to affect property values," Jon Peters said. Peters and his wife own a home and 10 acres near Interstate 90 in North East. "The reality is that they're putting these things in neighborhoods, not in agricultural districts, and they're going to affect our homes."
Zoning board Chairman Larry Umholtz and members Jim Artz and John Johns voted Dec. 12 for the denial, following a hearing that lasted a little more than an hour and included testimony from citizens and BP representatives. About 40 people, including Hegins Township Zoning Officer Allan Swab, attended the hearing held in the Hegins Area Ambulance Association building on Gap Street.
The board added a provision to the windmill ordinance stating personal property windmills cannot cause loss of a signal, such as from a satellite or dish TV or a cell phone, to a neighboring property. As a result of the change, the supervisors will have to re-advertise the ordinance to be adopted at its Dec. 20 meeting.
Committee Chairwoman Susan Madian said she - and several other council members - have heard concerns and complaints from residents since council approved the ordinance three weeks ago. None of those residents had voiced their concerns during the ordinance approval process.
In written testimony to the Army Corps, Thomas Kunz, a biology professor at Boston University with a long list of studies and publications qualifying him as an expert on bats and their reproduction, said there is a high level of risk to the Indiana bat population at the proposed project site. The location is routinely and heavily used as a roosting and foraging location, as well as a potential bat migration path, Kunz said.
While the new law bans wood-fired burnersand essentially relegates wind turbines to the less dense R-1 zoning district, it eases traditional setback requirements for residents and businesses contemplating systems like solar panels, said Komelasky. Without the ordinance, the turbines could have cropped up in high density neighborhoods and become a source of problems. And Komelasky said they can be "noisy and obtrusive."
Fayette County needs to move faster to update zoning for renewable energy and Marcellus shale gas wells, according to some residents who addressed commissioners during a public meeting on Thursday.
The chairman of the Fayette Zoning Hearing Board said members of the board "totally ignored" political pressure and instead made its decision regarding a controversial wind farm "in favor of being honest and acting in a professional manner."
In a unanimous vote June 7, the Hegins Township supervisors adopted an ordinance they said had as good of a defense as the township could provide regarding a wind farm proposed by BP Wind Energy.
The Mahanoy Township supervisors on Thursday approved two ordinances regarding the creation of wind and solar farms within the township. The ordinances state that plans for wind turbines or solar panels must be reviewed by the township planning commission before they can be permitted in the township.
The Portage Township supervisors are attempting to streamline the permitting process and reduce the local costs of having an on-lot residential or small-business wind turbine. A revamped ordinance based on an original statute adopted in 2005 will be advertised next week with plans for adoption in April, Supervisor Kenneth Trimbath said.
The Brady Township Supervisors moved one step closer to adopting an ordinance that will regulate the construction of commercial wind turbines in the township. According to supervisors Chairman Darryl Beatty, the purpose of the special meeting was to discuss and amend the ordinance that was presented at an earlier special meeting.
Technology exists to generate electricity through wind turbines and solar panels. But Erie's zoning code hasn't caught up -- yet. Erie City Council will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to the code that would allow for the construction and installation of "urban solar farms," or large-scale, commercial energy-generation facilities, within the city limits.
The Brady Township supervisors moved one step closer to enacting an ordinance regulating the construction of wind turbines by presenting a draft copy of that ordinance at the December meeting. They limited questions and discussion of that ordinance to one-half hour at that meeting but said that there will be a public meeting held at the Community Building Tuesday.
The answer as to whether a combination wind turbine and cellular tower opposed by neighboring property owners is allowed to be built on a Franconia property is still blowing in the wind. But the township now has rules for any future plans to build windmills. The new rules were approved by the Franconia supervisors at their recent meeting.
Fayette County commissioners took no action following a hearing to make revisions to an ordinance that permits commercial and residential windmills and wind turbines as a permitted use, rather than by special exception, in areas zoned agricultural, light industrial or heavy industrial. Commissioners had approved the ordinance in June, but attorney Richard Bower, representing Iberdrola Renewables of Portland, Ore., said the ordinance required some minor revisions.