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Ann Arbor residents not seeing the beauty of solar

Sustainable energy may be pretty cool – but it isn't always pretty.

A new solar array in Ann Arbor has residents complaining.

About three hundred solar panels have been installed next to a neighborhood in northwest Ann Arbor.

They're part of the University of Michigan’s efforts at sustainable energy.  Jim Kosteva is Director of Community Relations at the University of Michigan.

He says the site is still under construction.  “Just as in a construction of a single family home, the landscaping might be one of the last things you do on the project site.  That’s a similar situation here.”

Kosteva says the U of M regrets the concerns of residents.

Jane Lumm sits on the Ann Arbor City Council.

She says some residents think it's like looking at the back of stadium bleachers.

She’s putting together a meeting with University officials and DTE to discuss with residents their plans for landscaping the area.

“I trust that they will listen to the residents and others”, she says, “who have a multitude of suggestions on how we can rectify the current design and layout in a way that is more visually, aesthetically pleasing.”

Lumm says the meeting should occur in the next few weeks.

-Chris Zollars, Michigan Radio Newsroom