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    • 29yrswithaGApass

      RECENT SITE UPDATES   11/03/2017

                                                   
Matt Kaiser

APROVED: NJ’s Largest Net-Metered Solar Project Planned for Six Flags Great Adventure

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I cannot imagine there is no better way of going about this than plowing down 90 of the last few remaining acres of forest on the property. Apparently it is just the cheapest way of doing it.

 

As far as planting 25,000 trees in exchange; I'll believe it when I see it. Where are they going to plant them? If there's room to plant 25,000 trees, why don't they use that space for the solar panels.

 

It just kills me that they are so intent on destroying forests when the forest was the reason that spot was chosen for the park. The forest was the greatest asset the park had, until it was destroyed.

 

Why can they not learn to use the forest to create an amazing atmosphere instead of destroying it.

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^^^ I could not agree more. The forest is the greatest asset the park has. It was built there for a reason. Six Flags has been very content systematically destroying it since they bought the park. There has to be a place where a solar farm could be built without destroying more forest. They could use the current parking lot. They choose not to because it would be cheaper to plow down the forest than to build the structure necessary to raise the panels above the cars. As always they believe whatever is cheaper is better. I understand it is a business, but cheaper is not always the best for the business. What about the unused safari land? Or nearby farm land no longer used for farming?

 

I am glad people are protesting this stupid decision, however I believe the protests will fall upon deaf ears. Six Flags just does not understand what they are doing. As usual they believe that whatever is the cheapest choice is the best choice. That is how we wound up with roller coasters in the parking lot and the newest "roller coaster" that is nothing more than a cheap carnival ride.

 

The park needs new management. Actually it needs new ownership, but unfortunately that will probably never happen.

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I'm not positive on this, but i think the only choices they had were the piece of land they are using, or the Parking Lot. Now they could of got rid of the Safari, and used that land, but that would never happen. But that ALOT of their land is wetland's that they can't build anything on. Even with expanding the park, they are pretty much "landlocked" in most directions. I just hope they follow thru, and re-plant the Trees they claim they will.

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I'm not positive on this, but i think the only choices they had were the piece of land they are using, or the Parking Lot. Now they could of got rid of the Safari, and used that land, but that would never happen. But that ALOT of their land is wetland's that they can't build anything on. Even with expanding the park, they are pretty much "landlocked" in most directions. I just hope they follow thru, and re-plant the Trees they claim they will.

Someone mentioned in an earlier post that there is unused safari land that is larger than the current parking lot. I assume the current safari ride is not as large as the previous drive through safari, which leaves empty land. I do not know if this is true or not, but if it is they would have other options.

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There is empty unused areas however some of the animals from the 'americas' are sometimes there and migrate over that way at the end of the day, as well as the baboon section. It was an option but in reality it isn't fully an option.

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I know the layout has changed in the Safari now with "Safari Off Road Adventure", but any land taken from the Safari would be minimal, and as you said the Animal's need all the space they have. Minimal land probably will be taken eventually on the side by the old Safari Gate's, as that's the only real direction they can go for expansion with the Theme Park. This Solar Array, the extending of the Season with HITP, it seems to me this is all laying the foundation, and part of a bigger plan to turn Great Adventure into a year round destination with a Hotel.

Edited by Railer

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I have no idea how big the current parking lot is, or exactly where the forest they are planning to use for the solar farm is in relation to the park, but if it were possible I think it would be a much better use of the forest to create a parking lot under the trees. They could remove only half the trees, leaving enough to both shade the cars and create an amazing atmosphere where people would park in a forest instead of on a giant slab of cement. Then the could use the current parking lot for the solar farm. The land is already cleared and they would not have the expense of raising the panels for the cars to park under.

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The Forrest they are using is nowhere near the park entrance of the park in general. It's on the opposite side of the safari on 'reed road'. It's a dirt road that runs along Parallel of the of the safari. Using that land to create a shaded parking lot isn't an option. Also they'd have to take down a lot more trees to fit the spaces since a lot of trees would have to be left for 'shade' which would just create a whole other fiasco about cutting down trees. Majority, if not all Parking lots I've seen aren't shaded as it is not sure why you would expect the park to.

 

The park considered all options and the only doable one was where it is going.

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Six Flags America has a lot of trees in their parking lot but that is a smaller parking lot for a smaller park. It is nice though to go back out to your car and eat lunch under one of the trees.

Edited by robertleax

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The Forrest they are using is nowhere near the park entrance of the park in general. It's on the opposite side of the safari on 'reed road'. It's a dirt road that runs along Parallel of the of the safari. Using that land to create a shaded parking lot isn't an option. Also they'd have to take down a lot more trees to fit the spaces since a lot of trees would have to be left for 'shade' which would just create a whole other fiasco about cutting down trees. Majority, if not all Parking lots I've seen aren't shaded as it is not sure why you would expect the park to.

 

The park considered all options and the only doable one was where it is going.

The park probably has not considered ALL options, and this is probably just the cheapest one.

 

Just because MOST parking lots do not have trees you believe Great Adventure should not? That is probably the thought process that goes on in Six Flags board rooms. If you just want to build a park on a slab of cement you buy an empty lot, not a forest. They chose the forest for a reason, and it wasn't because they needed firewood.

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The park probably has not considered ALL options, and this is probably just the cheapest one.

 

There really is no other viable option for them to get solar power. It's either this, or extremely expensive. Six Flags isn't even the one paying for the construction, panels, or maintenance, either. The scale of power they need is immense. Covering all the parking lots and every building they have in solar panels would still not be enough.

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Six Flags America has a lot of trees in their parking lot but that is a smaller parking lot for a smaller park. It is nice though to go back out to your car and eat lunch under one of the trees.

 

The trees also provide cover for the car thieves that plagues SFA's parking lots. It will also take a generation or two for the saplings to grow up into full size trees. Likely not all of the planted saplings will survive and will need to be replaced.

Edited by The Master

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The trees also provide cover for the car thieves that plagues SFA's parking lots.

This would also be a factor for the solar panels being installed in the parking lot. Although I tend to live in my own world where I don't think bad things happen I have thought about the fact that the solar panels would give some degree of cover for car thieves from the parking lot watch tower. I think the tower helps but it isn't much more than a deterrent. If the solar panels were erected in the parking lot that deterrent would be practically eliminated.

Edited by scott

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I'm all for saving Trees in today's World, but i don't think i would really like coming into the Park and going into an enclosed, parking lot/Solar array structure. It would totally kill the view's of the park, and just be a terrible 1st impression coming onto the property. If they follow thru with replacing most of the Trees removed, i am all for this. Any trees planted won't take that long for them to "mature", any greenery now grows at a more accelerated rate nowadays with the increase of Carbon in the atmosphere. But with the amount of space they will always keep "prerserved" with the marshland's, and with the HUGE benefits for the Park having it's power from renewable energy, and the small Carbon footprint the park will have after this since almost all rides are electric. And not even mentioning the $$$ saved with their monthly JCP&L bill being mostly eliminated (i worked with PSE&G for 13yrs,what the Park pay's a month is insane) We will see the benefits of this sooner than later as long as corporate don't gobble the saved $$$ up. A few years after this is up and running, the Park may have the oppurtunity to really fix "everything". They just need to keep the current team in place running the Park.

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The trees also provide cover for the car thieves that [/size]plagues SFA's parking lots.

Are we really trying to make the argument that trees are bad because they give cover to thieves? How about having security in the park? Oh I forgot, that costs money.

 

If you really think the park is going to spend money that they save on upgrading the park, your sadly mistaken.

 

Where exactly do they plan to plant 25,000 trees to take place of the 18,000 they are cutting down? Why don't they put the solar panels where they plan to put the 25,000 trees? I doubt they plan to do any such thing. Even if they do it would not create another forest.

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I was away for a few weeks so I need to get caught up on all the details, but is ridiculous that the NJ DEP proposes all these "green" alternatives and then shoots down and provides endless red tape to companies and individuals that want to help the cause. :cursing:

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Now the Park is being sued to stop it by the DEP i believe. Article in yesterday's Trentonian, (i'll get it to you Harry) If the NJ BPU signed off on this project, the DEP should not be doing this. I personally know a couple people high-up in the BPU from my year's with PSEG, they aren't happy about it, it undermines their authority. The NJ BPU is one of the "toughest" in country, and really do act for what's best for NJ. They have shot down many proposals, on alot of issues that would have not benefited New Jerseyans. As high as our rates are, they are one of the cheapest in the Country. I know PSEG has lowerd Gas rates the last few year's even. (the Park is JCP&L)

Edited by Railer

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Didn't Leroy originally want to build a Disney-like resort with residential, shopping, but only have Enchanted Forest theme park?

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He wanted to build a full resort (much like WDW) with hotels, campgrounds, recreation, shopping and multiple theme parks (all of which would be small but add up to one Great Adventure). The theme park built was kind of a "best of" from those ideas for the parks combining it all into one theme park.

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Fight will continue against Six Flags solar energy plan

YOUR TURN GUEST COLUMN JEFF TITTEL
Tri-Town News - September 29, 2015

Jackson Township has amended an ordinance it adopted in January to now allow solar energy arrays in the parking lot of Six Flags Great Adventure. However, it will still allow Six Flags to continue the clear-cutting of up to 90 acres of a forested site to construct a solar energy farm. Despite the ordinance that allows solar panels to be installed 25 feet off the ground, which could be used in parking lots, it will still allow solar in the Conservation Zone.

 

Environmental groups, including the New Jersey Sierra Club, filed a lawsuit in May against the township, the Planning Board, Great Adventure and KDC Solar to stop this project. A pre-trial conference was scheduled for Sept. 30 in state Superior Court.

 

We are in court over the original approvals for Six Flags to clear-cut up to 90 acres of forest for a solar farm and now Jackson is trying to play games by changing the ordinance.

 

We oppose this ordinance because it does not solve the problem. The ordinance does not protect the Conservation Zone and allows a substantial amount of clear-cutting in an environmentally sensitive area. Even if they cut less than 90 acres, it will still have negative impacts. We support solar energy and want to see large scale solar projects go forward, but this project will harm the environment. Given the size of the Six Flags property, there are many alternatives to come up with an alternative site on buildings and disturbed land. Building a solar farm should be a positive for the environment and should not cause environmental damage in the process.

 

Clear-cutting 18,000 trees on environmentally sensitive lands will not only cause destruction, but it will take longer to achieve permits for wetlands, wetlands buffers, buffer hazards and storm water, and take threatened and endangered species habitat.

 

With Jackson’s adopted amended ordinance, it will allow solar arrays to be up to 25 feet tall. However, this does not mean Six Flags will only install solar on the many alternative sites they have like parking lots, ticket areas, storm water retention basins, staging areas, rooftops and other areas.

 

The ordinance could allow Six Flags to install solar up to 25 feet in the woods, too. This ordinance will only work if they amend it so Six Flags actually cannot put solar in the Conservation Zone. If this ordinance was sincere, then Jackson would change it to require solar arrays only in disturbed areas and remove the 90-acre parcel from allowing solar. They should also require Six Flags and KDC Solar to require more efficient panels so there is less space used.

 

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Green Acres program wants to buy the 90-acre property to prevent the clear-cutting. With that extra money, Six Flags can afford to install the solar on their parking lot.

 

The proposed location, east of the safari park, would require the clear-cutting of 18,000 trees on up to 90 acres. The property is mostly forested and sits next to the Colliers Mills Wildlife Management Area, a 13,000-acre area in Jackson and Plumsted.

 

The area includes environmentally sensitive areas, headwaters for two Category 1 streams, and steep slopes. These streams are tributaries of the Toms River.

 

Additionally, the site is an important wildlife corridor between the Toms River and Crosswicks Creek watersheds. The site is home to habitat for barred owls and northern pine snake — protected species.

 

This site has so many environmental constraints and problems that not only would it cause environmental harm, it could take years for permits (to be issued) and the project could take even longer.

 

Given all of the constraints of the property, the project could be denied or even take years for approval. Six Flags wants to complete this within two years. However, if they choose a site that has already been cleared, they can complete the project a lot faster and a lot cheaper.

 

We are going to continue to fight this case since Six Flags can clearly install solar panels in other places. Cutting down 18,000 trees will undermine the entire purpose of installing a solar energy farm. Eliminating the forest will add more flooding and pollution, since the original trees had the ability to absorb carbon and clean our air.

 

It is very easy to put solar panels above parking lots, which will also help shade cars and prevent clear-cutting. Solar panels can go on empty lots and on top of buildings.

 

These alternative areas would have much less impact on the environment and Six Flags must consider them. Jackson’s new ordinance does not see the forest through the trees.

 

Jeff Tittel is the director of the New Jersey Sierra Club.

 

 

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"The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Green Acres program wants to buy the 90-acre property to prevent the clear-cutting. With that extra money, Six Flags can afford to install the solar on their parking lot."

 

I wonder how much of that is true. It would be nice to have a new paved parking lot with solar panels above.

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