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Dominion paying close to $1 million for 'visual impacts' of off shore wind farm

WTKR Coastal VA|Colter Anstaett|April 1, 2024
VirginiaUSAImpact on ViewsOffshore Wind
On the beach in the Croatan neighborhood in Virginia Beach, you can hear ocean waves and see an unblemished horizon. But that could change in the near future, with wind turbines possibly being visible from shore. 
Dominion has agreed to pay the city of Virginia Beach $290,000 as a result.

Money to go to Virginia Beach, Cape Henry Lighthouse
 
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — On the beach in the Croatan neighborhood in Virginia Beach, you can hear ocean waves and see an unblemished horizon.
 
But that could change in the near future, with wind turbines possibly being visible from shore.
 
Dominion has agreed to pay the city of Virginia Beach $290,000 as a result.
 
News 3 asked Dominion why that amount.
 
"We engaged directly with Virginia Beach to select the mitigations and the $290,000 is the estimated cost that Dominion Energy, Virginia Beach and Federal stakeholders agreed would address the mitigations," Dominion Spokesperson Jeremy Slayton said in a statement.
 
At the March 5, 2024 City Council meeting Virginia Beach City …
... more [truncated due to possible copyright]
Money to go to Virginia Beach, Cape Henry Lighthouse
 
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — On the beach in the Croatan neighborhood in Virginia Beach, you can hear ocean waves and see an unblemished horizon.
 
But that could change in the near future, with wind turbines possibly being visible from shore.
 
Dominion has agreed to pay the city of Virginia Beach $290,000 as a result.
 
News 3 asked Dominion why that amount.
 
"We engaged directly with Virginia Beach to select the mitigations and the $290,000 is the estimated cost that Dominion Energy, Virginia Beach and Federal stakeholders agreed would address the mitigations," Dominion Spokesperson Jeremy Slayton said in a statement.
 
At the March 5, 2024 City Council meeting Virginia Beach City Council members voted to accept the $290,000.
 
In a statement to News 3, the city's historic preservation planner explained what the money will be used for.
 
The $290,000 that the City of Virginia Beach will be receiving from Dominion Energy Virginia is funding that was agreed on through the Section 106 review process and is solely for mitigation for adverse visual effects to 23 historic resources in Virginia Beach from the CVOW-C project. Projects that will be undertaken with the Section 106 mitigation funding will include:
 
Development of a Sea Level Rise and Disaster Mitigation Plan for historic resources
 
Preparation of National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) nominations for gunning and hunting clubs in Virginia Beach
 
Survey and documentation of the historically African American neighborhoods of  Doyletown and Queen City, and support of the production of NRHP nominations for them and/or for historic mid-century hotels in Virginia Beach
 
Production of a pattern book for the Cavalier Shores Historic District
 
Educational programs and interpretation of the Virginia Beach Surf and Rescue Museum and the Atlantic Wildfowl Heritage Museum/deWitt Cottage
 
Mark Reed - Virginia Beach Historic Preservation Planner
 
“I kind of feel like they should treat it localized," said Croatan neighborhood resident Deana Hess.
 
She would like to see Dominion spend money on the neighborhood.
 
“If they’re impacting the Croatan neighborhood, then maybe they should do something to help all of the beach accesses that are eroding, the fences are falling down," Hess explained.
 
She also worries about how the wind farm could property values.
 
“I just don’t know if that will have a big impact," Hess said.
 
Craig Grube also lives in the neighborhood and is actually in favor of the project.
 
“I think in the long run, with global warming (or) climate change whatever you want to call it, we need to get off of fossil fuels and wind is one of the predominant ways of doing it," said Grube.
 
Along with paying the city, Dominion is also paying the Cape Henry Lighthouse $650,000.
 
That includes contributions to fund “restoration projects, educational programming, or the development of a renovation and expansion plan for the Cape Henry Lighthouse Visitor Services Center," according to the statement from Slayton.
 
Preservation Virginia CEO Elizabeth Kostelnhy said in a statement to News 3 the money was a negotiated amount.
 
The $650,000 in mitigation funds were negotiated as a result of the federal Section 106 process under the National Historic Preservation Act and will offset some of the impact of the wind turbine project on the viewshed of Old Cape Henry Lighthouse. We're undertaking a $2.5 million restoration project at Cape Henry, as well as upgrading onsite visitor facilities and expanding educational programs. The mitigation funds will add support in all three areas. While we're largely supportive of renewable energy projects, we recognize that the wind turbines will affect the view from the top of Cape Henry Lighthouse more than many other locations in Virginia Beach.
Elizabeth Kostelnhy - Preservation Virginia CEO
 
Dominion also said the wind turbines will be painted to help them blend in on the horizon and required aircraft warning lights will only be on when aircraft are in the area.

Source:https://www.wtkr.com/news/in-…

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