Cree Inc. of Durham, North Carolina USA, reports that the City of Asheville has initiated North Carolina’s first large-scale deployment of LED street lights. The city is installing 3,643 of Cree’s LEDway® street lights. Asheville expects to save $260,000 annually in terms of reduced electricity and maintenance costs.
During the initial phase of the project, completed in June 2011, 730 street lights in Asheville’s River District and Kenilworth neighborhoods were replaced with 67-watt to 195-watt LEDway luminaires. These are estimated to save the City $45,000 in annual energy costs. The city is installing an additional 2,913 LEDway street lights and expects to save 50 percent of current energy use and maintenance costs due to the LED upgrade.
The lighting upgrade has the support of the municipal government. Asheville’s city-wide street light upgrade project reportedly complies with the City Council’s 2008 lighting ordinance, to reduce glare and light pollution. In 2009, Asheville City Council unanimously approved using Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants, part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), to fund efficiency initiatives, including the first phase of the street light replacement.