Goodwin to get LED lighting

By Crystal Kang

The city of Urbana plans to collaborate with Sternberg Lighting Company in Roselle, Ill., on a project to install LED street lighting on Goodwin Avenue.

The manufacturing company will provide its services to Urbana for free, since this is an experimental project.

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“The LED lighting will provide photometrics, energy savings, and a lamp life of up to 100,000 hours,” said Public Works Director Bill Gray. “We may spend $200 for the (lighting) fixtures.”

Gray said he will keep the Urbana City Council updated on the project’s progress. This is a unique plan, as it focuses on the need for pedestrian-level lighting, as opposed to lighting for traffic.

The LED lighting is not as bright and hazardous as the current street lamps. Installation of these new street lamps lends 40 to 50 percent more energy efficiency, according to Ward 1 Alderman Charlie Smyth.

The project will improve the streets for pedestrians and bicyclists, Smyth said.

Smyth said installing the same lighting scheme around the University unifies the campus life.

“A year ago, we blocked a proposal to put forward a (request for proposal) on lighting for the Goodwin Avenue lighting project,” said Smyth. “(Since then) we’ve been pushing for more efficient and safer lighting.”

Four communities have already committed to using LED lighting. Those include Anchorage, Ala., Ann Arbor, Mich., and two cities in Canada.