What Was The Cost of The Arch Celebration and Makeover?

The new Reno arch.
The newly renovated Reno arch. Image: Ty O’Neil.

A reader contacted ThisisReno wanting to know the cost of the Reno arch’s recent makeover and the June celebration of downtown’s famous icon.

Here is what City of Reno spokesperson Jon Humbert told us:

“The hard costs for the Reno Arch Celebration, held June 25, 2018 in downtown Reno, are $3,975, which came from the City of Reno’s annual Community Engagement budget line. In addition, a number of local companies and organizations donated goods and services for the event.”

The reason for the makeover: rewiring was needed, the bulb panel on the arch needed to be repaired, and the damaged metal exterior needed to be replaced, Humbert explained.

The makeover itself was $226,000 and was paid from room taxes as awarded by the RSCVA. Room taxes are the charges visitors to local hotels pay to stay each night in Reno. Those dollars are then used for specifically designated purposes.

“The Reno Arch Refresh Project, approved by Reno City Council on December 13, 2017, was completed by the City of Reno and contractor YESCO on April 30, 2018,” Humbert added. “A public input process, which included a survey and other in-person engagement efforts, factored into Council’s decision to select a gray and blue background and stainless brushed (silver) metal legs.”

Nearly 3,000 people responded to a city survey and gave input into the arch project.

More than 1,000 people participated in the June celebration. June 25 was selected because it was on June 25, 1929 that the words “The Biggest Little City in the World” first appeared. The 1980’s theme of the celebration was chosen because the current arch first debuted in 1987.

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Bob Conrad
About Bob Conrad 1068 Articles
Bob Conrad is co-founder of ThisisReno. He manages ThisisReno and Conrad Communications, LLC, his marketing communications consulting company. He also works part time for the University of Nevada, Reno.


  1. ridiculous crazy money spent…..far more couldve been done for less. Totally unnecessary!

  2. I would like to see the room tax increase, in order to maintain additional “public facilities” and public art in Reno, and make the downtown “comparable” to the Vegas strip! A lot of folks find Virginia Street to be “old and run down.” While it is charming, it could be improved.

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