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Welcome To The Solar-Powered Las Vegas Sign

January 8, 2014 at 11:59 AM | by | ()

If you haven't been by the Welcome to Las Vegas sign lately, your name might not be Ron M. The VegasChatter reader loves the sign "for the way it welcomes people, the design and the memories it provides people." But, he just had to share a Vegas rant with us on Facebook recently, not about the iconic landmark, of course, but to recent "improvements" around it:

Why have they blocked the sign with large solar panels? Now it is no longer a sign, but a reminder of bad designers who continue to ruin the visual landscape. I know what I'm talking about as I've been a licensed architect for over thirty years. There are many other ways to incorporate solar panels without ruining a national landmark.

Solar panels at the Las Vegas sign? Yep. Turns out the clean energy push in Southern Nevada means the the sun will soon be powering the neon and incandescent lights millions jump for. (Admit it, you've done it.) Maybe, the energy savings can help pay for more parking? 'Cause we had to illegally park just to take the snapshot shown above.

The solar changes were led by the Green Chips and Clean Energy Project and funded through donations from the Consumer Electronics Association, NV Energy, the Las Vegas Centennial Commission and Bombard Renewable Energy. A dedication and flip-switch ceremony will take place this afternoon at 4:30 p.m. if you'd like to witness the moment or give them your opinion -- after leaving it for us below, of course. If you're going to give them a piece of your mind attend, let us know so we can make popcorn look for you on the webcam.

(PHOTO: VegasChatter)

Archived Comments:


I am ALL ABOUT GREEN -- but I am getting married there in 19 days! I simply can NOT believe that they have done this NOW to this historic landmark. They couldn't figure out a better, more strategic place to put the panels? How about the fantastic shadows it's going to make on the landscape/signage?

I'm guessing it will be all close up shots for our wedding photographer.

Not as bad as it seems

You know how you can take a photograph at the percise moment someone talking or laughing has a god-awful face?  That's kinda like this photo.  It's taken from way back in the parking lot, making it appear the sign is obscured.  

The reality is you will walk past these solar panels from your car to the sign.  Not only is the actual sign not obscured, you'll realize the position of the solar panels was a very smart location.

If you are like this so-called 30 year licensed architect and enjoy taking pictures in parking lots showing the back-end of cars and the stalled SkyVue Ferris Wheel off to the right, then the solar panels will bother you.  But if you're like the many other tourists in the picture standing in front of the sign, your pictures will turn out beautiful!


They don't seem to be interfering with photos, however, it's an eyesore for folks who look forward to driving past the sign on their way to The Strip. It would be better if these panels meant the power lines behind the sign would disappear, but I don't believe that's the case.

The Sign Is Fine

You need to stop being an alarmist and show a picture in perspective. The panels in no way interfere with the sign. Why would you stir up such controversy?

No Worries

We were there as the panels were being installed. The sign is fine. Why Vegas Chatter would post a picture from this angle is beyond me. Your wedding and wedding pictures will be fine.


The photo was taken from this angle to show the panels because that's what the story is about. You can clearly see the people gathering for photos behind the panels. We never said photos were obstructed.

Chill people

The panels are about 50 feet away from the sign itself. The sun moves left to right in this photo so no shadows will cast on the sign. The panels are also on the southbound side, so people driving into town on the northbound side still have a clear view of the Welcome Sign.

So relax, it's fine.

Think clearly about this...

It's hard to believe this picture isn't photoshopped.

Cant they move the solar panels into the ground near the sign?

Maybe they could be placed on the sidewalk with power lines underneath the street to the sign location?

Seriously America is completely "green" whipped. We have to let our big green fill in the blank hang out to prove we care about --- what... I suggest watching "George Carlin  - Save the Planet" on youtube (8 min 4 sec version.)

So what if the panels are 50 feet away, judged on their own, they're STILL FUGLY!

don't freak out

take a look at the earthcam.  Seems to me the solar panels are high enough they're not going to bother anyone. Much.

<a href="http://www.earthcam.com/usa/nevada/lasvegas/">http://www.earthcam.com/usa/nevada/lasvegas/</a>


Yes, but for many photographers such as myself and others, it's not the same view.  Nice that it's gone Solar but not hide the sign!

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Amy Hollon

after viewing the cam

Not as bad as I thought.  I will be there checking it out on Monday!