Notice of Public Hearing
Proposed Amendments to Town of New Shoreham Zoning Ordinance
Article 5 Performance Standards, Section 517 Solar Energy Systems (SES) (C) Definitions & (F) Standards for Ground-Mounted Systems and Article 4 Criteria for Special Use Permits, Section 425 Solar Energy Systems (A) Applicability & (B)(4) Standards
Monday, November 13, 2023
In-Person Meeting at Town Hall, Old Town Road, Block Island RI
Watch on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmvoSBIQ0bsFRg1kxPgNVCA
The New Shoreham Town Council will consider amendments to the Zoning Ordinance related to Solar Energy Systems. Language proposed to be deleted is shown in strikeout strikeout. New proposed language is UNDERLINED. The proposed language may be altered or amended prior to the close of the public hearing without further advertising, as a result of further study or because of the views expressed at the public hearing. Any alteration or amendment must be presented for comment in the course of the hearing.
§ 425 Solar Energy Systems.
A. Applicability: Solar energy systems are considered accessory uses, and are permitted in all zoning districts, as provided in § 517.
A ground-mounted solar energy system, or solar canopy, consisting of one or more installations with a total array size greater than 400 square feet, is allowed only upon the granting of a special use permit by the Zoning Board of Review. Such use shall also undergo development plan review by the Planning Board under the provisions of § 704. In no case shall a solar array size greater than 750 square feet be permitted to interconnect to a single utility meter if the primary use of the lot is residential.
A ground-mounted solar energy system, or solar canopy, consisting of one or more installations to be located in the minimum front setback of a property, is allowed only upon the granting of a special use permit by the Zoning Board of Review. Such use shall also undergo development plan review by the Planning Board under the provisions of § 704.
4. Solar energy systems shall be sited and designed to minimize any negative aesthetic impact on viewsheds and abutting properties. The siting of solar energy systems should prioritize limiting visibility from public roadways. The design shall incorporate landscaping and design elements to visually screen the SES from public roadways and abutting properties when reasonably possible.
§ 517 Solar Energy Systems (SES).
C. Definitions: The following terms shall have the following meanings as used in this Section:
8. Solar pool heating systems a are exempted from this ordinance.
F. Standards for Ground-Mounted Systems:
2. Ground-mounted SES shall comply with the minimum side and rear setbacks for accessory structures and uses for the zoning district in which the SES is located. Applications seeking placement of ground-mounted solar energy systems within the minimum front setback of a property shall require a Special Use Permit from the Zoning Board of Review. Such use shall also undergo development plan review by the Planning Board under the provisions of § 704.
3. Setback designations on non-paved Town or State roads shall be subject to the requirement of Zone RC or the site’s specific zone, whichever is less.
3 4. The first 250 square feet of array size shall be exempt in the calculation of lot coverage. Additional array size beyond 250 square feet shall be counted toward the maximum lot coverage.
Posted: November 13, 2023
Hearing: December 4, 2023
Attest: Millicent McGinnes, MMC