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Danville Utilities’ streetlight conversion project has reached a milestone, with more than one quarter of the 4,000 standard sodium vapor lamps scheduled for conversion having been replaced with light-emitting diodes, or LEDs.
The project, which has been delayed by bad weather, is expected to be completed by the end of January, weather permitting.
“For some of the major corridors, we have to step down the voltage, which requires a transformer replacement,” Utilities Director Jason Grey said Wednesday. “As a result, we have to disconnect streetlight circuits. Due to the recent rains, outages and storm damage from Tropical Storm Michael, we have been delayed in restoring some areas as quickly as we would like.”
Currently, one of the major corridors without street lighting is Memorial Drive from the water plant to the cloverleaf at George Washington High School.
“We expect this area to be converted within the next two weeks, weather permitting,” Grey said. “Most of Memorial Drive has already been converted, and the contractor is working at night replacing lights to avoid traffic congestion.”
When Memorial Drive is completed, crews will begin work in other major corridors such as Piney Forest Road, Central Boulevard, Piedmont Drive, Mount Cross Road, U.S. 58 East and U.S. 58 West.
In addition to major corridors, crews currently are working in neighborhoods off North Main Street.
To date, crews have installed LEDs along Riverside Drive, South Main Street, the neighborhood surrounding Danville Community College, Industrial Avenue, Goodyear Boulevard and Cane Creek Boulevard.
The contractor is Pittsburgh-based The Efficiency Network, which provides engineering and consulting services. American Lighting and Signalization is the subcontractor performing the installation.
LEDs not only provide brighter lighting, but also use less than half as much energy. This project, which costs $1.5 million, will replace nearly half of the 8,250 streetlights that Danville Utilities owns and operates along 315 miles of City maintained streets. A second phase to convert the remainder of the streetlights will be included in the budget for the next fiscal year.
Danville Utilities provides natural gas, water, wastewater and telecommunications services in Danville and distributes electricity to approximately 42,000 customer locations in a 500-square-mile service territory covering Danville, the southern third of Pittsylvania County, and small portions of Henry and Halifax counties.