SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, Director of the Department of Public Works (DPW) Chris Cignoli and Eversource officials announced on September 9 the plans to modernize the City of Springfield’s street lights with LED’s.
The plan will begin January 1, 2023 at no cost to the city. There are over 14,000 street lights in the city, and it is expected that it will take three to five years to fully switch out the street lights.
Mayor Sarno states, “I want to commend DPW Director Chris Cignoli and his dedicated team for their continued efforts in making our public roadways safe for both vehicle and pedestrian traffic. This conversion and retrofitting of our street lights to LED’s is a public safety and quality of life issue and I want to thank Eversource for responding. My administration has been committed to enhancing our public roadways by reviewing all project options not just for vehicle traffic but for pedestrian and bicycle use too. Our goal is to provide for an efficient, effective, and safe means for all traffic to safely travel. These new LED street lights will greatly enhance our public roadways for residents and businesses in our neighborhoods. Furthermore, this initiative supports my administrations previous efforts of enhancing over 140 pedestrian LED lighting along Main and State Street, and improving the aesthetic lighting of our historic and commercial areas in our downtown.”
Christopher Cignoli, P.E., DPW Directors says that, “this coordination and negotiation with Eversource has taken a number of years and we are pleased to be able to provide our citizens with better street lighting as well as turning to “green energy” alternatives. Over the next few months, the city, DPW and Eversource will develop a general schedule of the retrofitting process and also determine geographically how the process will be initiated throughout the city.”
Springfield City Council President Jesse Lederman told 22News, “For too many years, we just had outdated lighting technology. People were tired of seeing street lights out all over the city. Really, it’s a initiative that we have continued to advocate for because its a capital improvement project that will really benefit every single neighborhood in the city of Springfield.” Lederman adds that a sub-committee meeting will take place later this week to learn the exact details and timeline of when the LED lights will start transitioning into the city.
The city began working with Eversource in 2016 on the installation of enhanced pedestrian lighting in the downtown area, first starting with installing over 30 lights on Main Street from the Arch Street to State Street. In 2018, they installed over 60 lights on Main Street from State Street to Central Street, and on State Street from East Columbus Avenue to School Street.
In May, 2022, the city of Springfield announced the third phase for the installation of enhanced LED pedestrian lighting in the South End with over 50 lights that will be installed on Main Street from Central Street to East Columbus Avenue, on Locust Street from Main Street to Mill Street, and on Mill Street from Locust Street to East Columbus Avenue. The lights more focused on the sidewalks to provide better lighting for pedestrians.
Mayor Sarno, Congressman Richard E. Neal, Chief Development Officer (CDO) Tim Sheehan, DPW Director Chris Cignoli, and the Springfield Business Improvement District have been working on enhancing up lighting at specific buildings downtown as well to highlight their historic architecture and to enhance the quality of life and public safety.