NextLight™ Powers Up Art in Public Places with $526,000+
The citywide NextLight build has meant a boost of over $526,000 for Longmont’s Art in Public Places program, Longmont Power & Communications announced today.
“We’re proud to say that not only has NextLight made Longmont the fastest city in the nation, but its construction is helping to keep Longmont a beautiful community as well,” LPC general manager Tom Roiniotis said.
“Behind the scenes, LPC has contributed significant funds to Art in Public Places which continue to beautify the city with public artwork in a variety of ways,” AIPP administrator Lauren Greenfield said. “AIPP appreciates this ongoing support and collaboration.”
All capital projects in Longmont that cost more than $50,000 are required to contribute 1% of certain project costs to AIPP. That includes the 2014-2017 NextLight citywide rollout, which came to roughly $56.6 million. The gigabit fiber-optic internet service is on track to repay its bonds by 2029, and was named the nation’s Community Broadband Project of the Year in 2017 by the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors (NATOA).
The contribution is just one of the many ways in which LPC gives back to the city, including donations for tree plantings, sponsorship of community events, and providing free Wi-Fi in four city parks. The utility also illuminates the city with street lighting at a value of over $1.2 million a year and pays $5.2 million in franchise fees to the city’s general fund. Overall, LPC’s low electric rates – including the second-lowest residential rates in the state out of 58 utilities – save Longmont homes and businesses $29 million a year compared to the average Colorado community.
According to the Longmont Economic Development Partnership (Longmont EDP), the NextLight rollout also had a significant economic impact on the Longmont community. The Longmont EDP estimated that the construction generated $25.9 million in earnings for the community, added 424 jobs, and boosted local, state, and federal tax revenues by over $660,000. These results were generated by the citywide construction itself, and do not include the additional economic benefits that continue to be derived from the completed network.
LPC’s announcement comes during AIPP’s annual Shock Art program, where artists repaint the city’s switchgear boxes in a variety of designs and styles. Since 2010, different boxes have been painted as a Rubik’s cube, a honeycomb, fantasy landscapes, and more. AIPP has put out a call for artists to paint five boxes this year; interested parties should contact Greenfield at email@example.com. Shock Art details and requirements can be found online at www.longmontcolorado.gov/aipp under “AIPP: Shock Art.”
About Longmont Power & Communications
Longmont Power & Communications is a community-owned, not-for-profit electric and internet services utility that operates under the direction of Longmont City Council. Established in 1912, our goal is to deliver electric and communications services that provide outstanding value to our customer–owners. In 2014, we began to build and operate the NextLight fiber-optic