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Grand Rapids almost done with LED streetlight changeover

City of Grand Rapids

A move to make city lighting more cost efficient and keep residents safe is almost complete, but not without some complaints.

Grand Rapids’ conversion of its 18,000 City streetlights to LED fixtures is almost done. The Citywide LED project that started in 2021 is more than 80 percent complete with 15,000 already converted to LEDs.

The project enters its final phase with the City’s lighting contractor scheduled to install 1,000 LEDs a month in the three remaining Focus Areas, depending on the weather.

The decision to move to LED lights for all neighborhood street lighting was done for its economic, safety and environmental benefits. Here’s City Engineer Tim Burkman.

“From a safety perspective, most accidents happen at night due to poor visibility. The new lights will improve, as well as our public safety workers at night.”

But Burkman says they have received word from some who aren’t totally happy with the new lights, complaining they’re too bright. Burkman says they did do their research and says the color temperature of the lights is the best fit and concerns will be addressed.

“We’ve had a couple instances where folks have reported the lights being cast on their properties and we’re able to make some tweaks in those instances.”

Burkman says the city expects an estimated annual energy savings of approximately $350,000 when fully operational adding that the project should wrap up in about three months.

Jennifer is an award winning broadcast news journalist with more than two decades of professional television news experience including the nation's fifth largest news market. She's worked as both news reporter and news anchor for television and radio in markets from Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo all the way to San Francisco, California.
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