Illuminating Detroit: 40,000 LEDs are installed ahead of schedule

Lighting Midwest Urbanism
Detroit at night. (Steve Lietzau via Flickr)

Detroit at night. (Steve Lietzau via Flickr)

Detroit‘s Public Lighting Authority is bringing light back to some dim city neighborhoods, which have been expecting new LED streetlights by the end of the year.

As the Detroit News reports, that plan is ahead of schedule. All 40,000 LEDs should be in place by the end of July. Installations are occurring in every zip code of the city, making the construction an especially wide-reaching task.

Their next job will be relighting Detroit’s major streets and highways, including Michigan, Fort, Gratiot, Grand River, and Jefferson streets. That work, scheduled to begin next month, is planned to wrap up by the end of 2016.

The Detroit News interviewed Detroit Police Officer Jennifer Moreno, who credits the new efficient lighting with helping to reduce crime. But the future’s not entirely bright:

Odis Jones, executive director of Public Lighting Authority of Detroit, said streetlights are being vandalized in some areas. The authority, he said, has been monitoring the incidents and working closely with police.

“Any major city is going to experience some of that, so we’re no different,” he said. “Unfortunately, there are still some businesses that don’t enjoy operating in light.”

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