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Public hearing scheduled for solar array in Scipio

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  • Staff Report 

SunEast Development has proposed a 113.7-acre solar array project in the town of Scipio, Cayuga County, and is currently seeking approval for its site plan. The solar array, planned for a location previously utilized for hay cultivation on Center Road, is estimated to comprise around 44,050 panels with an 18-megawatt capacity. The proposal follows a similar initiative by North Carolina’s Duke Energy Renewables, valued at approximately $23.1 million, which had previously been approved for the same property, with SunEast Scipio Solar LLC succeeding Duke Energy Renewables Solar LLC.

To facilitate community discussions and input on the proposed solar array, the town planning board will convene a public hearing at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 27, at the Scipio Volunteer Fire Department. The meeting will precede the board’s final vote on the plan, giving the public an opportunity to engage with the details of the proposal. SunEast’s site plan has already passed preliminary reviews for potential impacts at the county level at an August 17 meeting.

The venture is aligned with an escalating interest and investment in solar energy solutions within Cayuga County, as indicated by data from the New York State Energy Research & Development Authority. As of June 30, the county has seen the establishment of 389 solar installations, boasting a cumulative capacity of 36.7 megawatts, showcasing substantial growth compared to 1 megawatt from 65 installations at the end of 2013.