The Dog loves it when people notice the goings-on in their neighborhood, since he can’t be running around every which way off his leash.
Paul Weiss is one of those people. He lives near Pioneer Trail Middle School in Olathe, and he noticed that a wind turbine was installed but wasn’t being used. He did a little digging and learned that the turbine had been given to the Olathe School District for free, but it was broken. Nothing happened and then it was taken down.
Weiss wants to know: Wouldn’t it be worth the money for the district to fix it and take energy off the grid?
Yes and no.
The district took the turbine down because the motor didn’t work.
“It would have been cost prohibitive to fix it,” said Ann Kohn, a spokeswoman for Olathe schools.
That’s not to say the turbine is gone for good.
“They are looking to see how much it would cost to convert the turbine to solar panels,” Kohn added. “They are waiting for estimates.”
Until then, the turbine is being assessed by an electrical company.
If it makes its way back to the school, however, the solar panels and turbine will be used strictly as educational tools, not for power.
So, if the stars — and sun — align, the turbine could be up and running again. Not as fast as a greyhound, but running.
Do you have a problem or a question about a public issue? Write to the Watchdog, The Kansas City Star, Newsroom, 1729 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64108, or send email to email@example.com. Include your name, phone number and city of residence.