The Sparta Township Council unanimously approved a redevelopment plan for the former Sparta Landfill site.
The new ordinance declares the property at 15 Prices Lane a “non-condemnation area in need of redevelopment.” The township had Benecke Economics prepare a redevelopment plan for the property. The plan is dated Aug. 10, 2021.
The ordinance authorizes the township manager to solicit sealed proposals to repurpose and redevelop the area.
The request for proposals will seek energy installers, and not pure developers. The council expects the land to be leased long-term.
The site might be used for solar panels.
“I’m concerned about giving up a public asset for this,” Councilman Dan Chiariello said on Sept. 14. “We have experience with solar panel deals that have gone very successfully.”
Township engineer Stanley Puszcz said part of the plan is to have a link to the Department of Public Works. The site could potentially be an electric vehicle charging field, as that technology grows in popularity, he said.
Township manager Neil Spidaletto said a mechanical field might wrap around a solar installation at the site. A Christmas tree farm would be consistent with the open space concept of that zone, he said.
Puszcz said he didn’t regard the property as an asset.
Councilman Joshua Hertzberg said, “This is the first step so we can turn a potential liability into an asset.”
“The way I understand it is that we’re leaving our options very open, and there are multiple things we can do with this property that will benefit the township,” Mayor Christine Quinn said. “We will be in the driver’s seat to determine which ones are implemented.”
“We’re leaving our options very open, and there are multiple things we can do with this property that will benefit the township. We will be in the driver’s seat to determine which ones are implemented.” Mayor Christine Quinn