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ROUND TOP, Texas – A $19,848 grant from the Lower Colorado River Authority and Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative will allow Round Top to install energy-efficient outdoor lighting on its historic town hall and the public square that surrounds it.
The Community Development Partnership Program grant, along with $7,000 in matching funds, will pay for eight vintage-style fixtures that will house LED bulbs. Four of the fixtures will be placed above entrances to the town hall, and four will be attached to poles to light sections of the square. All eight fixtures will fit with the design of Round Top’s mid-1920s town hall and be dark sky compliant, directing their light downward.
“Round Top is a dark sky community, and we have deliberated about how to accomplish this project and meet the dark sky requirements for about five years now,” said David Stall, a special assistant to Round Top’s mayor. “This was not really driven by the city council, but by community organizations. Those groups selected the poles and the fixtures and made their recommendations to the town.
“Our population is about 90 people, so funding is always a challenge,” Stall added. “We looked out and saw this grant opportunity – so this was very, very welcome and allows us to get this project completed in a timely matter.”
Stall said the new lighting will boost the daytime and nighttime look of the public square while also improving security for civic meetings at the town hall or outdoor events on the square. Located in Fayette County, Round Top draws visitors annually to its series of Antique Weeks, during which many vendors set up on the public square. The square also is central to Round Top’s annual Fourth of July celebration, which began in 1851.
The community grant is one of 25 grants awarded recently through LCRA’s Community Development Partnership Program, which helps volunteer fire departments, local governments, emergency responders and nonprofit organizations fund capital improvement projects in LCRA’s wholesale electric, water and transmission service areas. The program is part of LCRA’s effort to give back to the communities it serves. Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative is one of LCRA’s wholesale electric customers and is a partner in the grant program.
Applications for the next round of grants will be accepted in July. More information is available at lcra.org/cdpp.
The Lower Colorado River Authority serves customers and communities throughout Texas by managing the lower Colorado River; generating and transmitting electric power; providing a clean, reliable water supply; and offering outdoor adventures at more than 40 parks along the Colorado River from the Texas Hill Country to the Gulf Coast. LCRA and its employees are committed to fulfilling our mission to enhance the quality of life of the Texans we serve through water stewardship, energy and community service. LCRA was created by the Texas Legislature in 1934 and receives no state appropriations. For more information, visit lcra.org.
Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative is one of the largest electric cooperatives in Texas and has been serving its members since 1939. Bluebonnet serves more than 111,000 meters and owns and maintains 12,000 miles of power lines, located across more than 3,800 square miles within 14 Central Texas counties. Bluebonnet’s service area stretches from Travis County to Washington County, and from Milam County to Gonzales County. For more information about Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative, go to bluebonnet.coop and follow the co-op on Facebook and Twitter.
LCRA: Clara Tuma
Bluebonnet: Will Holford