Category Archives: Alternative Energy

Mini Turbine ‘Wind Trees’ Could Generate Power for Homes, Electric Cars

Mini Turbine ‘Wind Trees’ Could Generate Power for Homes, Electric Cars
I have been approached by a member of the Alternative Energy Committee about changes to our Residential Wind Tubine section of the Dennis Zoning By-law. The above article is just one example of the changes that have been made in wind technology since we adopted our zoning by-law.

These Wind Turbines Have a Twist 
Mashpee, on Route 130, has an example of vertical turbine technology that provides opportunities for residential wind energy alternatives as well.

Over the coming weeks I will be working with the Alternative Energy Committee to review how we can revise Section 11 of the Dennis Zoning By-law to promote greater use of wind energy in residential settings.

Zoning Amendment to Promote Reuse of Sand Pits for Solar

The Planning Board will be holding a Public Hearing on Monday October 5th on a proposal to allow commercial scale solar facilities as a reuse for sand pits located in Residential Zoning Districts.  At present, there are about 7 locations in Dennis where sand pits are operational, or have been abandoned in the R-40 zoning district. The proposal will allow these properties to be reused for solar.

Sand Pits are pre-existing non-conforming land uses in the residential areas. They are all so old that there are no reclamation requirements imposed on these properties. The goal of the zoning change, it to create a financial incentive to have these properties cleaned up when they are no longer productive, get a layer of top soil brought in, and have them at least seeded for grass to grow. The solar facilities will provide the economic incentive to not simply have them walked away from.

The proposed change is to add commercial scale solar as an option, by special permit of the Planning Board, for current and former sand pit properties of at least 2 1/2 acres in size. The amendment is below, the changes are in Bold Italic:

a) amend Section 2.2.2.7 Use Regulation Schedule, Industrial, Utility and Other Uses Subsection 7.i Commercial Scale Solar Energy Electrical Generator:

 

PRINCIPAL USES DISTRICT  
  R-40

R-60

Quivet Neck/Crowe’s Pasture

Resource Protection District

 

RR

 

LB

 

EB

 

GC-I

GC-II

GC-III

 

I

DPVC

Area A

DPVC

Area B

 
7. INDUSTRIAL, UTILITY AND OTHER USES                      
i. Commercial Scale Solar Energy Electrical Generator N except S* N N N N S S Y N N  

*  By Special Permit of the Planning Board for the purpose of reclaiming former sand pit properties of at least 2.5 acres in size.

Solar Power As A Means Of Reclaiming Old Sand Pits?

For well over two years I have been discussing with the Alternative Energy Committee additional locations for solar power in Dennis. During this time period, the concept of the sand pits came up. Around the same time P. J. Nyberg approached me about his pits and what he could do with the sites he owned. From this, the idea was born to consider these sites, with tremendous sun exposure for solar farms. It took awhile to figure out a simple approach to this proposal. The challenge was creating a proposal that applied to a limited number of parcels presently zoned residential that have had a history of functioning as sand pits.  The following provides a concept for the zoning amendment and an idea of the locations where this might apply.

Simply changing the use table seems like the best approach.

  1. a) amend Section 2.2.2.7 Use Regulation Schedule, Industrial, Utility and Other Uses Subsection 7.i Commercial Scale Solar Energy Electrical Generator:

 

PRINCIPAL USES DISTRICT

R-40

R-60

Quivet Neck/ Crowe’s Pasture

Resource Protection District

RR

 

LB

 

EB

 

GC-I

GC-II

GC-III

 

I

DPVC

Area A

DPVC

Area B

7. INDUSTRIAL, UTILITY AND OTHER USES                    
i. Commercial Scale Solar Energy Electrical Generator N  S* N N N N S S Y N N

*  By Special Permit of the Planning Board for the purpose of reclaiming former sand pit properties of at least 2.5 acres in size.

The minimum tract of land could be anywhere from 2.5 to 4 acres depending upon how broadly the Board may want this to reach. Below are a few areas where this could apply, and the land area associated with the remaining sand pit.

Some of these sites are under multiple ownership, some include public lands (town and water district). Only one site has had any level of new vegetation take over.

Location 1

Location 1 is about 7.6 acres in the residential zone and another 8 in the GCI Zoning District. Commercial Solar is allowed in the GC I district.

Location 2

Location 2 is about 13 acres.

Location 3

Location 3 is about 2.8 acres

Location 4

Location 4 is about 63 acres

Location 5

Location 5 is about 30.4 acres.