INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett and Indianapolis Power and Light (IPL) announced phase two of “Operation Night Light” Wednesday afternoon.
The City and IPL agreed to a six-year contract to install at least 4,000 new streetlights around Indy. IPL also plans to convert more than 27,000 existing lights to energy-efficient LED bulbs. The change will cost the City $12 million, according to our partners at IndyStar. The conversions will begin in the first quarter of 2018.
Phase one launched last summer after a 35-year moratorium on new city streetlights. It aimed to install 100 streetlights in areas that needed them most, such as at schools and churches. The first phase didn’t require any additional tax dollars thanks to the IPL partnership.
According to a 2016 IndyStar investigation, the decades-long moratorium contributed to hundreds of pedestrian deaths since 1980. The study shows these deaths mostly happened in neighborhoods where residents aren’t able to pay for new lights themselves. Some more wealthy neighborhoods in the city have picked up the bill to add their own streetlights.
The new lights from phase two will be installed within six years, with most of them in place by 2020. Any money saved from switching to LED bulbs will go towards additional streetlights.
“This is a major transformation for our city and IPL wants to ensure that all neighborhoods and communities benefit from the advantages that sufficient lighting can provide, such as greater safety and an improved quality of life,” said IPL President & CEO Rafael Sanchez. “By securing the agreement with the City and completing the street light study, we are making significant strides and tremendous progress toward a brighter, more efficient future for everyone we serve.”
Mayor Hogsett issued this statement:
“Today’s announcement represents a significant victory for Indianapolis neighborhoods – and Indianapolis taxpayers. Through this investment in Indianapolis Power & Light Company (IPL) infrastructure, our city will join the cutting edge of new street light technology, reducing our carbon footprint and improving our public safety efforts by investing those tax dollar savings into thousands of new lights on long-darkened streets,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett. “We appreciate the work of our partners at IPL in helping to facilitate this historic overhaul, and we look forward to continuing to ensure Indianapolis’ future is the best and brightest it can be.”