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Bright streets of the future coming downtown

Time has come for downtown smart lights.
Time has come for downtown smart lights.
Adam Benjamin

Shoppers and workers on San Diego's downtown streets will soon see GE's LightGrid, controlled by the city using wireless controls, illimuniate the busy locations with bright steady light. Workers started putting in the new LED street lights on downtown poles in mid-January.

By late Spring, thousands of LED lights will give the avenues and streets full light that makes everything easier to find. San Diego is the first large U.S. city to take the step lighting its downtown using wireless controlled smart lights.

Mayor Todd Gloria, last week readied the public for a new era in lighting, "This innovation will provide us with real-time data on lights that are malfunctioning or not working at all, so communities can feel safe with improved lighting." The smart technology measure energy usage at each single light, and, keeps the city up to date. GPS location technology tells the city the lights using the energy.

Light poles on the streets will not change the historic look in downtown to keep up with the revolutionary use of technology. Smart lights will have the historic look San Diegans have liked for decades. Workers embed the wireless technology in the pole fixture.

The lighting replacement work funded by SDG&E rebate funds, and state and federal loans and grants, will drop down the city lighting bill. Cutting annual energy use by 2.8 million kilowatt hours, the smart light technology will save the city more than 250,000 dollars on its bill.

This is a Center Line Policy Alert.