Solar Panel Moratorium

The moratorium on solar panel applications in the Architectural Review District has been lifted. Worthington City Council approved legislation to clarify regulations to help homeowners with future solar projects.

Resolution approved at the May 1, 2017 City Council Meeting

Amendments will be incorporated into the Architectural Review District
Design Guidelines.

Background


On February 6, 2017, Worthington City Council passed a 90 day moratorium on consideration of new applications for solar panels in the Architectural Review District by the Architectural Review Board. Two inherent values of the Worthington community are to preserve the character of the Architectural Review District while promoting the sustainable practices of our residents and businesses. The purpose of the moratorium was to provide time to strike a balance and appropriately research, evaluate and discuss options that might address concerns about the visual impact of solar panels on the character of the District.
ARD MAP
There were a number of opportunities for residents to be informed and involved in the process.
  • February 13th City Council Committee of the Whole meeting - Staff presented research findings related to how solar panels are regulated in the Worthington community in comparison to other cities in Ohio and the U.S. Staff answered Council questions related to the findings.
    2-13-2017 Meeting - Audio from Solar Panel Discussion 
    Presentation
    Community Comparison Research

  • Week of February 20th or February 27th - Staff met with interested parties to gather feedback, answer questions and discuss issues or concerns.
  • March 20th City Council meeting – The public had the opportunity to provide comment and input.
  • April 10th City Council meeting - City Council discussed the findings of the research and the information collected through public input.
  • May 1st City Council meeting - Resolution approved creating clear criteria for the Architectural Review Board to follow when deciding where solar panels could be allowed. 

In 2010, the City of Worthington proactively provided a framework through its Architectural Design Guidelines for sustainable features to be incorporated into the District. Successful solar projects followed with the installation of solar panels on buildings in the District, such as Evening Street Elementary School and the Peggy R. McConnell Arts Center. Since this time, there have been two residential solar applications in the District. The City has a long tradition of promoting sustainability initiatives including increased bike and pedestrian connections and access, community gardening, projects to promote recycling and re-purposing, and building efficiency projects.

Comments and questions can be directed to planning@ci.worthington.oh.us or Planning and Building Director Lee Brown at 614-431-2424.