The final stage of a project to upgrade Tauranga streetlights to LED lights is now underway and expected to be completed by mid-2021.
Over 7000 streetlights were replaced with LED lights in residential Tauranga areas over the last year. Council contractors will upgrade around 5000 more on the city’s major roads, arterial routes, industrial areas and the city centre in the next six months.
The project is part of a nationwide initiative supported by the Government and funded by Waka Kotahi/New Zealand Transport Agency, who are paying for 85% of the upgrade costs.
Council says the new LED lights will pay for themselves within 10 years, taking into account reduced energy costs and maintenance.
Tauranga City Council Infrastructure Project Manager, Wayne Troughton, says the upgrade to LED makes sense from an environmental factor as well as a financial one, as LED lights use between 50 to 75% less electricity than traditional streetlights.
“This means reduced demand for electricity, which ultimately benefits the city and the country as a whole. The new lights will last up to 20 years – whereas the current ones only last around four years,” said Mr Troughton.
“The LED lights have improved directional lighting, meaning less impact for residents and the old streetlights are also broken down and recycled, where possible.”
Upgrading the current lights to LED means Tauranga City Council is also installing a central control system for streetlights, which will track the performance of individual lights and control them remotely.