MVC greenlights several projects

Edgartown subdivision project moved to next month.

Chris Scott of Vineyard Family Tennis explains to commissioners why he would like to keep the tennis bubble up year round.

Updated May 18

Vineyard Wind’s undersea cable project, Vineyard Youth Tennis, Nova Vida Alliance Church, and the Yard campus master plan all got various approvals for their projects at the Martha’s Vineyard Commission (MVC) meeting Thursday night.

After several hearings and extensive deliberation, Vineyard Wind got final approval earlier this month, but commissioners officially signed off on it Thursday.

The project will install two 12- to 13-mile undersea cables, a portion of which will run 1.2 miles off the coast of Edgartown. The cables will provide electricity generated from Vineyard Wind’s proposed large-scale offshore wind farm to a power station in Barnstable.

The cables, the only part of the project under MVC review, drew a significant amount of public input, at times becoming contentious.

Commissioners approved the project in a roll call vote. Commissioner Trip Barnes voted no on the project because the commission did not put a bond on the cable that would make Vineyard Wind responsible for the cables in the event they were damaged. A federal bond, however, will be placed on the project, according to Vineyard Wind representatives that attended Thursday’s meeting

Chris Scott, chairman of the board of Vineyard Family Tennis, formerly Vineyard Youth Tennis, got permission to leave the tennis facility’s bubble up year-round to avoid interruptions in inclement weather.

In October, Youth Tennis got a $250,000 grant from MVYouth to build a new bubble after the previous structure was destroyed in a nor’easter in March 2018.

In a letter to the commission, Scott outlined the reasons for leaving the bubble up permanently. Previously, the Youth Tennis program would dismantle the bubble during the spring. Taking it down and putting it back up in the fall is a multiple-week process, and costs up to $40,000. Leaving the bubble up will save Youth Tennis money and provide increased access for children and adults. Scott also expects the bubble to last 25 years, double the life it would have if it was regularly inflated and deflated.

MVC executive director Adam Turner praised Youth Tennis, saying it is one of the Island’s most successful programs.

“They’re a bunch of killers,” Turner said of the many children who have gone through the program and play on the Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School team.

Nova Vida Alliance Church was granted an extension to its project, which proposes building an addition on its property, due to delays in securing a building permit from the town of Oak Bluffs. Commissioners granted the Rev. Valci Carvalho a one-year extension to his application.

The Yard got final written approval for its master plan project, which will double the performing arts organization’s footprint on its land in Chilmark.

In other business, a continued public hearing for the proposed 54-acre, 34-lot subdivision project in Edgartown was pushed to next month

The project came to the commission last month with several proposals, including the installation of a permeable reactive barrier (PRB) to eliminate nitrogen loading from its development.

Commissioner Richard Toole said developer Douglas Anderson had a “fruitful conversation” with the commission’s Land Use Planning Committee (LUPC), and will continue to develop his project proposal to meet the commission’s needs.

The hearing was continued to the commission’s June 6 meeting, but may be changed to a later date.

Updated to correct when the bubble was typically deflated – Ed.