In November, the city of Asheville, North Carolina, will initiate Phase II of its ambitious plan to replace all existing city streetlights with energy efficient LED streetlight fixtures.
The plan was developed by city officials to drive energy savings and align with long-term municipal environmental goals of reducing the city’s carbon footprint. Over 700 LED fixtures manufactured by BetaLED, a division of Ruud Lighting of Racine, Wisconsin, have been installed on city roadways. Approximately 2,800 BetaLED fixtures will be installed in Phase II of the program, which is slated to begin in November 2011. The third phase is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2012, followed by a fourth and final phase. The city’s streetlight installation program is facilitated through Progress Energy, the city’s energy provider.
“The biggest difference between Phase I and Phase II is the price of the fixtures. The significant price difference enabled us to purchase a larger number of fixtures to help us reach our goal to replace all of the city’s streetlights,” said Maggie Ullman, energy coordinator for the city of Asheville. The four year program is partially funded by the revolving savings generated by the state approved rate for LED streetlight fixtures. The new rate reflects the substantially lower energy consumption of LED fixtures compared to the city’s traditional high pressure sodium (HPS) and mercury vapor streetlights. “The savings resulting from LED streetlights will be used to purchase the remaining LED fixtures. Once that is completed, we will use the ongoing savings to fund additional sustainable projects for the city,” said Ullman.
All LED fixtures which are evaluated for the city’s streetlight program must be approved by Progress Energy. Currently the list of approved fixtures includes those manufactured by BetaLED, GE, and Leotek. “We are always looking for the best fixture for our city’s lighting needs. As long as the fixture is on the Progress Energy approved list, we will consider it,” said Ullman. Each phase of the city’s streetlight installation requires LED fixture manufacturers to submit a competitive bid.