The benefits of LED lights range from decreased energy costs and reduced maintenance expenses to better lighting quality and increased lifespan. As a result of the many benefits, cities and municipalities across the country are opting to invest in LED street lighting. Below you will find a few cities who are pioneering LED for municipal applications.
Beginning in 2010 with a goal of completing the project by the end of 2014, Seattle is converting its residential streetlights to LED. By replacing residential streetlights throughout the city, Seattle aims to lower energy consumption by 48 to 62 percent while reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the lights themselves as well as in the manufacturing process and in reduced vehicle trips for maintenance and repair. Upon completion of the project, Seattle estimates it will save $2.4 annually in energy and maintenance expenses.
As of 2013, Arlington had converted 77% of the 7,000 streetlights maintained by the city to LED. With 75% higher energy efficiency, these streetlights are saving Arlington $300,000 each year, a number that is expected to increase to $1 million annually upon completion of their LED streetlight installation project. In addition to reduced lighting expenses, Arlington is also reducing its environmental impact.
In the spring of 2012, Baltimore’s Department of Transportation announced its plan to retrofit street lighting throughout the city with LED bulbs. By installing 15,000 LED lights, Baltimore is able to save $1.9 million in energy costs yearly as well as $275, 000 each year in reduced maintenance expenses.
The main goal of the street lighting upgrade in Austin, Texas is to reduce light pollution and make the night sky more visible from urban areas. A $15 million project approved in 2012 planned to replace 35,000 city street lights with clearer, whiter LEDs. The city expects to break even on the project within three years and save immensely over the 15 year lifespan of the LED lamps.
Dallas took LED street lighting a step further by integrating solar power as an energy source for their new, energy efficient lights. Solar power is a great supplement to LED lighting because of the decreased energy consumption of LED compared to more traditional alternatives. By replacing less than 200 street lights with LEDs, the city is able to save $62,000 annually.
In June of 2014, Detroit installed its 10,000th LED street light, with a goal of installing 65,000 LEDs by the end of 2015. The $185 million dollar project is an effort to make Detroit a safer city while reducing energy consumption and expenses as well as maintenance costs. Once complete, the project is expected to save the city $2.5 million annually.