NPU project will lead to financial, environmental, public safety benefits for community

With nearly all 4,982 new LED streetlights installed, Norwich Public Utilities (NPU) held a public hearing on Tuesday evening to discuss proposed new rates for public and private streetlights that are projected to save the City of Norwich $358,217 in annual energy costs.

“NPU’s new LED streetlights will provide our community with financial, environmental and public safety benefits for years to come,” said Acting General Manager Chris LaRose. “The successful completion of this project is great news for our customers and the taxpayers in Norwich.”

Using the old high-pressure sodium streetlights, the City of Norwich used approximately 246,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity monthly and paid NPU $658,465 each year. With the new LED streetlights, the City will use approximately 64,187 kilowatt-hours of electricity every month and pay NPU approximately $300,000 every year, an annual savings of more than $358,000.

The newly installed Light Emitting Diode (LED) streetlights are a significant upgrade from the traditional High Pressure Sodium (HSP) streetlights that had been used for many years. NPU’s new streetlights lights will provide the community with a number of benefits, including:

  • Reduced energy usage, which helps the environment
  • Reduced costs for NPU related to the operations and maintenance (O&M) component of its streetlight program, with fewer repairs and replacements needed, given the ten-year life-span of the lights.
  • Better visible light for Norwich residents, increasing public safety in the community.

The new rates for both public and private customers will take effect on February 1, 2019.

The LED streetlight conversion project has a budget of $1.8 million and has not impacted NPU’s existing residential or commercial electric rates.  NPU’s contractor for the project, Tanko Lighting, is a nationally recognized leader in the lighting industry and has completed identical projects in Connecticut and the region, including Jewett City, Groton, East Lyme, and New London.