Why are lights on day and night in Citizen's Tower? - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Why are lights on day and night in Citizen's Tower?

Omni Building in August of 2017 (Source: KCBD Photo) Omni Building in August of 2017 (Source: KCBD Photo)
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

Why are the lights on day and night in the unfinished Citizen's Tower in downtown Lubbock? That's what KCBD viewers asked, so we asked the city.

City of Lubbock Public Information Officer Ben Lawson says that it is a matter of safety and security.

This is a great question and we understand how the lights could be viewed as inefficient.  The lights are on for security, safety and liability protection.  As you know, the building has been vandalized and has been the subject of trespass attempts.  The Lubbock Police Department recommended that the building remain lighted to make it a less attractive target.  Accordingly, the lights remain on in an effort to do everything we can to increase the safety and security of the building and the basements.  We would also note that the electric costs reported below include not only the lights, but also the cost for operating the construction elevator and ongoing minor work in the building.

The building has experienced several instances of vandalism since being purchased by the city.

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Lubbock Police Chief Greg Stevens said he was not aware of any police reports involving trespassing or vandalism at the building since the city installed the lights.

Lawson's response led us to wonder if anyone actually pays an electric bill for the lights burned by the city. We asked Lawson who pays the electric bill for the lights at the old Omni Building/Citizen's Tower?

"The City of Lubbock pays the electric bill at the former Omni Building," Lawson said.

The building has its own electric meter with Lubbock Power & Light, Lubbock's city owned electric utility. KCBD requested and received copies of the electric bill for March, April and May of 2017.

Those bills show an average usage of 13,279 kWh each month with monthly bills ranging from $876 to $930. The rate category is described as "Large Municipal Service" with a Load Factor of 78.53%.

According to Matt Rose the average LP&L residential customer uses approximately 1,332 kWh per month in summer and 731 kWh in the winter. The city of Lubbock does not pay storm water fees or taxes.

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