Largo, Florida

LARGO, FLOR IDA 300 people to more than 70,000. And what began as a rural farming community, became the third largest city in Florida’s most densely populated county. Carol Stricklin, Director of Community Development, reports, “Our branding is really informing what we’re working on and where the city wants to go. Our logo has strong brand identification with three colors that symbolize the three major focus areas of our strategic plan: sustainability, public safety, and community pride. We also have a tagline: Community of Choice… Naturally!, which represents the idea that it’s a natural place to do business and to live. We’re going for a very strong sense of place and purpose as to what Largo is in the marketplace. That informs our economic development efforts and the way we approach our infrastructure projects.” The city has a sustainability campaign called Our Future Largo and a Sustainability Administrator who has put together “LEAP”– the Largo Environmental Action Plan. In addition, the City Commission signed on to the Ready for 100 campaign, which is a Sierra Club initiative to have a 100-percent, renewable zero emission energy by 2035. Largo was the 75th city in the U.S. to make the commitment; fourth in the State of Florida. Part of sustainability is taking care of fundamental infrastructure. Largo grew rapidly in the 1960s and ‘70s, so much of the infrastructure is approaching the 50-year mark. The City has been focused on recapitalizing that infrastructure. In particular, the sanitary sewer system (plant and collection system) has been almost completely rebuilt with an investment of $70 million. The City is also doing an intensive asset management program of its roadways, with resurfacing and reconstruction to maintain the quality. The idea is to invest in the fundamentals, now, to sustain Largo into the future and make it a more resilient community. “We also have some major investments in public