Log In

Reset Password

Solar park proposed in Schuylkill

The Reading Anthracite Company is planning to place approximately 5 acres of solar panels on land it owns north of Old Route 209 between Tamaqua and the village of Tuscarora.

A hearing for the Pottsville-based company will be held at 6 p.m. Sept. 27 before the Schuylkill Township Zoning Hearing Board.

The company wants to put the ground-mounted solar panel array on a 1,525-acre parcel zoned for general industrial purposes.

It needs a variance to do so since solar energy facilities are considered a special exception use in those zones. The panels will be fenced in a 10-acre area.

According to its application, the proposed facility in Schuylkill Township will not be visible from neighboring parcels or any public areas, will not generate noise and will not cause an increase in local traffic.

“The system will include a ground-mounted solar panel array, buried electrical conduits and a transformer pad,” according to the application. “An approximate 0.11-mile extension of 3-phase electric will be required, which will be completed by PPL.”

The system will be accessed by an existing driveway off township road 162 and will not require water or sewer service.

“The electricity generated by the system will be partially used on site via a Virtual Net Metering agreement with PPL, which allows aggregation of meters within two miles of the solar energy facility,” the application notes.

Reading Anthracite added that the system will not impact the value of other properties in the area, and won’t cast a glare on neighboring properties.

The proposed facility will take up less than 1% of the lot, will be fully encompassed by surrounding Reading Anthracite property and will not immediately adjoin any neighboring properties.

However, there approximately 90 properties that adjoin the entire 1,500-acre parcel, which borders Tamaqua, and Rush and Ryan townships.

The parcel is currently used for private recreation and the company plans to keep the remaining 1,515 acres for such.