Boulder City is dimming lights to draw in dark sky tourism

LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – Boulder City is hoping to gain a new kind of tourism by limiting light pollution. The city by the Hoover Dam y is using $1.9 million in federal grant money to dim street lights, city building lights and lights at parks.

“This pot of money was essentially to promote astrotourism in the state of Nevada,” City Manager Taylour Tedder said.

The change will bring a warmer dimmable LED light. Tedder said they will save on electricity and benefit the environment.

Tedder said city residents complained about the bright white lights shining into their homes.

The city’s main goal is to achieve a dark skies certification. It would make them the first city in the state to do so joining Flagstaff, Ariz., and other communities that are growing their night tourism through star gazing, while limiting light pollution.

Tedder said it will give people another reason to stop in Boulder City.

“I think it would generate more overnight stays,” Tedder said. “People coming to experience this whether they’re going for something else in Vegas or they’re here to see Lake Mead. They may choose to stop and stay in Boulder City longer.”

Changing the lights helps protect nocturnal wildlife too. The Dark Sky Association said lights at night disrupt plant growth and unshielded light contributes to the deaths of land and sea animals every year.

Boulder City will start the project in early 2023, and it will take several years to complete.

Commercial businesses and homeowners will not be required to change their lighting, but the city hopes many will follow along.

Residents can take Boulder City’s dark skies survey here.

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