Safety, Savings Cited As Valpo Moves To LED Street Lights In The Fall

- Aug 24, 2017-

VALPARAISO — Valparaiso, by late fall, will have new street lighting in place that will be safer, brighter and more cost effective.That was the joint message of City Administrator Bill Oeding and Robert Kramer at the City Council meeting on Monday.Kramer, who serves as Purdue University Northwest's Energy Efficiency and Reliability Center director, made a presentation on his research on LED lights.The city starting in mid-October and continuing in November will have more than 1,300 LED lights added, Oeding said.The LED lights will replace all the currently owned NIPSCO cobra head street lights."It will be substantial. You'll see a big difference," Oeding said.Oeding said the savings to the city with the move to the LED lights will be some $80,000 a year.Kramer said the Energy Efficiency and Reliability Center will continue to evaluate different facets of LED technology, and there will be re-evaluation on an ongoing basis. They plan to continue to test various vendors, and look at new product development for reliability and operating practices.Kramer said his studies have shown the LED lights to have many positives including longer use, up to 100,000 hours of life; reduced emissions, improved perception of neighborhoods, reduced maintenance, greater safety and reduced cost."I have tested the lights for the past three years," Kramer said.In the next few years, NIPSCO is equipping all of its street lights with LED technology. The new, light-emitting diode fixtures are brighter and more efficient than the high-pressure sodium lights being replaced, studies have shown."It's more efficient for us, it's more efficient for the customers," NIPSCO spokesman Nick Meyer said.By 2022, NIPSCO will replace 42,000 company-owned streetlights; some 7,200 are being replaced this year in East Chicago, Schererville, Munster, Highland, Valparaiso, Kouts, Wheatfield, Hebron and Whiting.An LED pilot program took place in 2014-2015, and in 2016 NIPSCO began the process of replacing all of its old fixtures with LED lighting.