It started last winter as a scheme to monetize some City-owned land north of Charles Williams Park. Then in May, it morphed into a plan that eyed the capped landfill at the end of North Second Street, much to the dismay of the Conservation Advisory Council and other advocates for the capped landfill as open space, a viewshed, a nesting ground for bobolinks, and a habitat for other wildlife. At its last meeting, which took place on June 23, the Common Council ad hoc committee pursuing the idea of building a solar farm seems to have reversed course.
Otherwise engaged at the special Planning Board meeting, Gossips could not attend the ad hoc committee meeting, but I learned from some who did that by the end of the meeting, it had been decided they would not do an RFP (request for proposal) but rather a request for expression of interest (REI) in creating a solar installation on the plateau of land that was the original proposed site. The landfill would not be included "due to wildlife habitat, viewshed, and need for open space in our dense urban environment."
David Konigsberg of the Conservation Advisory Council told Gossips: "To be clear about our position, we strongly support deployment of solar energy across the city--including ideas that generate revenues. And . . . we will help the Council by identifying opportunities to do just that. At the same time, we should continue our efforts to envision and build a more livable city. And a part of that is preserving rare and valuable parcels of open space."
|Photo: Andy Mitford|