Around Town | April 9, 2010 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - April 9, 2010

Around Town

LET THERE BE LED LIGHT ... Palo Altans may soon see their city in a new light — a whitish hue, to be exact. The city is planning to replace all 6,300 of its existing streetlights with the more efficient LED lights, a project that is expected to take several years. The first 600 or so are slated for replacement early next year. A pilot project last summer found that LED (which stands for Light Emitting Diode) streetlights are 40 percent more energy efficient than the currently used high-pressure-sodium lamps and would have a lower maintenance cost because of the longer lamp life. The Utilities Department is currently testing LED lights from six different manufacturers and it's asking residents for feedback. The new lights were recently installed around City Hall, on Ramona Street, Bryant Street, and Forest and Hamilton avenues. Residents are encouraged to e-mail the Utilities Department at LEDStreetlights@cityofpaloalto.org to offer feedback on the new lights. The city is also trying to get customers to buy LED lights for household use. The Utilities Department has been mailing out $8 coupons for the purchase of two different styles of LED lights at Palo Alto Hardware, Peninsula Hardware and Stanford Electric Works.

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Comments

Posted by JOBST bRANDT, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Apr 16, 2010 at 5:29 pm

WHEN A NEW SUPPLY OF LED HOUSEHOLD LIGHT BULBS COMES IN, PLEASE NOTIFY ME. PALO ALTO hARDWARE HAS BEEN OUT OF THESE FOR A WHILE. AND SUUGESTS I ASK YOU FOR NOTIFICATION WHEN NEW ONES ARE AVAILABLE.

Jobst Brandt <JBRANDT@SONIC>NET>


Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of Midtown
on Apr 17, 2010 at 6:31 am

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

Let's see if some street lights can be heat or motion detector activated.


Posted by Anon, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2010 at 10:31 am

The point that the naysayers miss is that conservation is the cheapest form of energy you can buy. Every new power plant will raise your rates. This city program is just a try-out, but, LED lights definitely look a winner long-term. Yes, today, they are too expensive, but, if volumes go up and prices go down, this could be huge.


Posted by Catherine, a resident of Community Center
on Apr 18, 2010 at 10:01 pm

The new LEd street lights I have seen in Palo Alto are garish, very white, and very offensive. Street lights were changed all over the Santa Clara Valley so that they would not interfere with astronomy research on Mt. Hamilton. When flying in or out of area airports, the few places that still have the old incandescent lighting really stand out. But for the most part, all the area cities have the warm toned-down orange-glow lights. Anyone know what the effect will be on scientific research?


Posted by Well,..., a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Apr 18, 2010 at 10:27 pm

It turned out that all those replaced street lights had no impact on Mt. Hamilton research. So it does make sense to revert to energy use and brightness as priorities. I suppose the aesthetics around garish and offensive lighting matters as well, but I don't personally think that matters as much as energy use and safety given the rapid growth of problems with those two. (I do agree that there's rapid growth here in the garish and offensive.)


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