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The City of Tacoma and Tacoma Public Utilities are partnering to convert almost 75 percent of the City’s aging overhead streetlights to energy-efficient LED technology. Work began Dec. 18 in southeast Tacoma and continued northward. The project is expected to be completed by the end of 2018.

There are more than 22,000 streetlights in Tacoma. The project team estimates it will convert about 16,000 streetlights to LED lights, and convert most of the remaining fixtures in future years. Existing streetlights have a life expectancy of three to five years, while an LED fixture’s anticipated lifecycle is 15 to 20 years before maintenance is required. LED technology improves street lighting quality and is easier to control up-lighting, glare and backlighting, which will help eliminate nighttime light pollution.

During the summer, the City typically receives about 200 streetlight repair requests each month. That number increases to about 400 during the winter months as the days get shorter, which can quickly create a backlog of almost three months during this busy season. Because of the life expectancy and the number of outages, the City’s typical response time will be drastically reduced once the conversion is complete.

The City will continue to own and maintain poles, and replace the LED fixtures as needed. Tacoma Power selected the contractor for LED installation and will also purchase and own the LED light fixtures and provide replacement fixtures to the City as needed.

Residents can check when their streetlights will be upgraded through an interactive map located at cityoftacoma.org/LEDStreetlights. The schedule will continue to be updated and refined as the project progresses. Questions and comments can be submitted at MyTPU.org/Streetlights.

For more information, contact the project team at BizRebates@cityoftacoma.org or call (253) 502-8377. To report a streetlight outage, contact the TacomaFIRST 311 Customer Support Center by dialing 311 within Tacoma city limits or (253) 591-5000 from anywhere else. Or submit a request online at cityoftacoma.org/tacomafirst311.


Puget Sound Energy has announced its commitment to reducing its carbon footprint by 50 percent by 2040. For the past 145 years, PSE has powered communities and businesses throughout Washington. Now, PSE has developed a measurable plan with short- and long-term steps to achieve this goal while ensuring they can continue to meet their customers’ needs for the next 100-plus years. This plan prioritizes a transition from coal, new product and resource development, and cleaner transportation in Washington.

“We can create a better energy future, which is why we are committing to reducing our carbon footprint by 50 percent by 2040,” said PSE President and CEO Kimberly Harris. “PSE is prepared to pave the way while also empowering our customers with simple and concrete actions they can take in their daily lives to lower their footprint. By working together, we can preserve and protect our environment for generations to come.”

PSE’s carbon-reduction plan includes the following initiatives:

Transition from coal: With the retirement of Colstrip Units 1 and 2 by July 2022 and the shutdown of Centralia Power Plant in 2025, PSE will be nearly 90 percent clean – meaning non-coal generation – and on the path to 100 percent by the early 2030s.

New product and resource development: PSE will make strategic investments in new products and renewable resource development, building on the popularity of programs like Green Direct that allow large-scale energy customers to subscribe to PSE’s renewable energy projects.

Cleaner transportation: With 43 percent of carbon emissions in Washington coming from transportation, PSE is committed to accelerating the growth and adoption of electric vehicles, as well as investing in the development of cleaner alternatives to diesel and other fuels for commercial and industrial uses to ensure buses, ships, ferries and trains can be as green as possible.

Some of these efforts PSE can and will do on its own. Others will require policy changes at the state level to ensure carbon-reduction goals can be met. Since building its first hydroelectric plant at Snoqualmie Falls in 1898, PSE has been a leader in renewable resource development. PSE is currently the third largest utility owner of wind power in the nation and has one of the country’s larger energy efficiency programs. These programs have helped customers conserve nearly five billion kilowatt-hours of electricity — that’s enough to power the city of Bellevue for three years.

“We’re responsible for powering more than 1.5 million homes and businesses,” said Harris. “PSE is ready to collaborate with our customers, lawmakers, regulators and communities to ensure the lights and heat are on while we collectively take strides to reduce our carbon footprint.”


The City of Tacoma wants to hear from community members in its upcoming community survey to be conducted from Jan. 2-12, 2018. A total of 750 randomly sampled households – 150 from each councilmanic district – across Tacoma will have the opportunity to identify which services they feel are important, which service areas have improved over time, and which service areas could improve in the future. The community survey, administered by MDB Insight, will assess the City’s performance in its major service areas, and help the City better understand community members’ perceptions of these service areas. The survey findings will also help define the community’s current priorities and aid the City’s ongoing planning and improvement processes.

Delivered in English and in Tacoma’s five primarily-used languages other than English – which are Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Korean and Khmer – the community survey will be conducted through calls from the telephone number (866) 415-0012 to randomly sampled Tacoma landlines and cellphone numbers. Those called can choose to take the community survey at that time, or schedule a later time to speak to an interviewer in their preferred language. If a call is missed, no messages will be left, but another call back may be received at a later time. Alternatively, those called can also choose to complete the community survey online in their preferred language.

The community survey will ask for general demographic information including age (but not date of birth), gender, race, annual family income, monthly housing costs, and whether one’s residence is rented or owned. While specific residential addresses will not be provided to the City of Tacoma as part of the dataset and report, general location information at the councilmanic district level will be used to help in an analysis of differences in service levels. The community survey will not ask for one’s social security number or banking/credit card information.

More information about the community survey is available on the City’s website at http://www.CityofTacoma.org or by contacting Jared Eyer from the City’s Office of Management and Budget at jeyer@cityoftacoma.org and (253) 594-7954.

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