Turbine talk takes off in AftonA windy topic looks set to come up on the agenda for Afton’s planning commission in the near future.
By: Amber Kispert-Smith, Woodbury Bulletin
A windy topic looks set to come up on the agenda for Afton’s planning commission in the near future.
Commissioners agreed at a meeting on Sept. 8 that they would like to draft an ordinance governing the installation of wind turbines within the city.
The city planner, Charles Marohn, indicated that turbines would likely be prohibited under the current ordinance language, and said he had brought the subject to commissioners’ attention in light of an inquiry from a resident interested in wind turbines.
Planning commission chair Jim Fox pointed to the city’s 1998 comprehensive plan, which included a policy to encourage alternative energy sources and regulate their use.
“[A wind turbine] is certainly an alternative energy source,” he said.
“There would be certainly, I think, some regulations that we would want to put in place.
“My personal opinion, for what it’s worth, is that I think they would be appropriate in the [agricultural] district, and the snide part of me says it would certainly be appropriate along Manning Avenue facing Woodbury.”
Commissioner Richard Bend suggested that any ordinance drafted to tackle the subject should include language governing sound generation and sightlines affected by a turbine.
“If someone actually wanted to build one, what I know about them is they raise as much conflict as anything, as any of the cell phone [towers] do,” added Barbara Ronningen.
Action to draft ordinance language governing wind turbines is likely to be taken at an upcoming planning commission meeting.
The subject is set to be included on the October agenda for discussion.