Boulder, Colorado, a City Set on Solar
Once a choice destination for hippies in the late 1960s, Boulder, Colorado, is today a city that receives accolades for its quality of life and citizen wellbeing. The city is in Boulder Valley, where the Great Plains and the Rocky Mountains meet. To the west, the Flatirons foothills are an iconic symbol of the city and a popular rock climbing and hiking destination.
Approximately 104,000 people live in Boulder, and they have ample outdoor space to explore: about 35,000 acres of open space is available for public enjoyment. Within the urban environment, hundreds of miles of bicycle-pedestrian paths cross the city, and 74 bike and pedestrian underpasses allow for safer travel year-round.
The main campus of the University of Colorado is in Boulder, and the city’s population skews lower as a result. Boulder ranks highly for education as well as happiness, making it a top-rated city in many categories: for raising children, retirement, LGBT families, artists, foodies, and outdoorsy people, among others. In short, Boulder is highly touted as a great city for everyone.
Municipalization of street lighting in Boulder
Boulder is a liberal, progressive city that has plans for municipalization of its electrical utility. By removing the private utility company from the equation, the city ensures more self-reliance, thereby allowing more opportunities to choose how the electricity here is generated. This can include alternative sources of energy, including solar power.
At this exciting time in Boulder, the options for moving to solar LED street lighting and park lighting could not be better. Boulder already has a commitment to achieving 100 MW of local, renewable power generation by 2030, with a goal of adding more solar lighting. Rebates and other incentives already exist for residential solar power, so it is a natural fit to also include commercial and municipal lighting in the equation. By choosing solar outdoor lighting that is both reliable and simple to manage, the city can achieve its goals—and push them even further.