The city of Tuscaloosa, Alabama has initiated the implementation of its first large scale energy efficient streetlight replacement project. The program, funded by a $702,000 Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) award, involves the purchase and installation of approximately 700 new LED streetlight fixtures manufactured by Leotek Electronics of Milpitas, California.
Before choosing the Leotek fixture for the current installation, city officials tested fixtures from several different manufacturers. The test program included field and visual tests to determine light quality, performance and durability. “We really emphasized the field test to help us choose the fixture we thought would best meet our specifications,” said Jon Howell, traffic systems manager for the city of Tuscaloosa.
“The city owns and maintains about 700 streetlights, so we are targeting those for replacement with the new LED fixtures,” said Howell. The existing 400 watt cobra head streetlights, located on the city’s interstate highways and arterial roadways, were replaced with LED fixtures. The new energy efficient luminaires provide lumen output equal to the previous fixtures. “We are already seeing significant energy use reduction in the new LED fixtures. The longer life of the LED luminaire will also help us use our electrical crews more efficiently for the other electrical needs of our city,” said Howell. The city currently budgets about $700,000 for energy and maintenance costs for all city streetlights. City officials expect to realize significant energy cost savings as a result of the new energy efficient streetlights.