Outdoor Lighting: Historic bridge gets LEDs, More cities get streetlight funding

July 6, 2010
More cities are beginning to receive LED streetlight funding, as outdoor LED lighting system installations grow in popularity.

In recent outdoor LED lighting system news, Easthampton, MA, Gothenburg, NE, and Berwick, Nova Scotia, Canada have all received new funding to install energy-efficient LED streetlights. Philadelphia, PA, meanwhile has judged LEDs too expensive. Elsewhere, Philips Gardco LED luminaires have been used to light the 267-ft Covered Bridge in West Dummerston, Vermont that was built in 1872.

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the West Dummerston Covered Bridge was until recently lit by high-pressure-sodium (HPS) lights. According to an entry on the Building Green blog, a local resident and electrician named Stan Howe that drove across the bridge regularly lead a movement to have the HPS lights replaced by LED luminaires.

The 100W HPS luminaires were replaced by 50W 121 Line Sconce fixtures from Philips Gardco. Each fixture integrates 30 LEDs. And a photosensor automatically controls the lights. Moreover, motion sensors can dim the lights when no autos are present. According to the blog author Alex Wilson, the new lighting both provides better illumination for drivers and highlights the internal and external architectural features of the wooden structure

The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) has awarded the city of Easthampton $174,985 for an LED streetlight project. The funds come through a Green Communities Grant from the DOER's Green Communities Division.

The city plans to replace 200 HPS streetlights with LED luminaires. The city hopes to reduce energy consumption by 20%. The engineering departments of Smith College and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst will assist the city in selecting specifying the LED fixtures.

The city of Gothenburg, NE is receiving a $206,080 grant for LED streetlights from the Nebraska Energy Office. The cost to replace 400 street lights is $257,600 and the city will cover the costs over the value of the grant. The city is estimating that it will save 58% in energy costs per year.

New Streetlights also reported that Berwick, Nova Scotia, Canada has received CAN $101,573 to replace 234 mercury vapor and HPS lights with LEDs lights. The city previously replaced 60 lights with LED luminaires.

Things aren't proceeding quite so smoothly when it comes to LED streetlights in Philadelphia, PA. While the city of Pittsburgh has been at the forefront of LED street lighting, Philadelphia won't adopt LED streetlight technology soon. The city apparently has judged the technology too expensive although some city officials are pushing the technology.