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Wind Turbine in Grant Park


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Wind Turbine in Grant Park
Topic: Local Information 5:42 pm EDT, Oct  9, 2007

The 49-year-old residential developer is remodeling his 1920s house to be more environmentally friendly, including installation of a 45-foot-tall wind turbine in his front yard. "It's really none of their business how I spend my money," Mann said.

The towering turbine, which overlooks majestic trees and Victorian rooftops, pits preservationists in Atlanta's Grant Park Historic District against a property owner and his individual rights.

"It's unattractive and it's a nuisance," said Scott Herzinger, whose home is three doors down. Mann "invaded the public view ... when he put that tower up."

At a cost of $15,000, Mann said the turbine will shave at least $20 per month off his power bill -- hardly a windfall. A proposed federal tax credit would bring Mann $3,000. Acknowledging it could be decades before his investment pays off, Mann said, "even if it was a 50-year payback, at least we've done something to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels."

Herzinger blames Atlanta, which "let us down miserably" when zoning officials sided with Mann.

Said Mann, "If regulations for historic preservation don't address modern-day issues, then they're not very sound."

But Herzinger, 48, who shares Mann's support for wind power, said Mann could have considered many alternatives which would have helped the environment more than the turbine. "After looking at the facts, it doesn't seem unreasonable to think of Mann's wind turbine as eco-bling."

It is Mann's property and its not against building regulations. And who cares whether it is cost effective or not or if you think Mann could have done alternatives or not. He decided to build a wind turbine. It highly visible and serves as a catalyst for discussion about engery policy in a way that filling his home with compact fluorescents won't do.

Good for Mann. Booo on cranky Atlanta home owners.

Wind Turbine in Grant Park

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