One approach to establishing a dark-sky, astronomy-friendly, community is to find a small town in a rural area that would be receptive to doing the following:
- Enact a comprehensive lighting ordinance that will be enforced
- Eliminate all dusk-to-dawn outdoor lighting
- Apply for International Dark Sky Community status
Obviously, this is going to be easier to do in a small community, and most likely one that is economically depressed.
What’s in it for them? What would the motivating factors be?
- A commitment from X number of people that they would move to the community provided the community agrees to 1-3 above being done. Options for new residents would be to either purchase or rent an existing home/apartment/RV space/etc., or to build the same but land would have to be available.
- The new residents would commit to working with the existing residents and businesses to improve the community and provide new opportunities, ensuring that this is a win-win situation for both existing and new residents.
- The new residents would commit to doing some or all of the things outlined in the Mirador Astronomy Village specifications document, or something like it.
- The influx of new residents and tourism will benefit all in the community, both economically and socially.
Does anyone know of a rural community that might be interested in putting their town “on the map” as an astronomy-friendly community for residents and visitors?