The city of Kinston, North Carolina, is prepared to launch its first large scale LED streetlight deployment. The project will involve the installation of approximately seven hundred forty fixtures and is funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) program. The Kinston project is likely to be the first deployment of a multi-phase LED streetlight initiative. The first phase will be funded by an EECBG award in the amount of $499,500 and leveraged funds of $115,718, for a project total of $615,218. The EECBG award is locally administered by the North Carolina Energy Office. City officials were officially notified of the EECBG award in early October 2010, and are now establishing project details and specifications.
The city of Kinston has already implemented a small pilot installation which involves LED streetlight fixtures from five manufacturers. Results from the pilot project demonstrated that the LED streetlights performed better than the high pressure sodium (HPS) and mercury vapor fixtures currently installed. “We have metered streetlights throughout the city, and we are eager to measure the actual energy savings of the new LED streetlights. We hope to leverage the savings created by the new fixtures and continue to replace our existing HPS and mercury vapor streetlights” said Ruth Tanner, public services analyst for the city of Kinston. Initial calculations indicate that this first installation will result in annual streetlight cost savings of approximately $200,000.
In addition to energy cost savings and savings resulting from reduced maintenance, Kinston city officials are also pleased with the positive environmental impact of LED streetlights such as reduced energy consumption, elimination of hazardous materials, and dark sky compliance.
City officials are preparing project specifications and plan details which will be issued in a request for proposals (RFP) scheduled for November 2010. The RFP will solicit bids for only LED streetlight fixtures. Project installation and maintenance will be performed by Kinston Public Services, the municipal utility.