The City of Kansas City is seeking to replace nearly 90,000 streetlights with modern LED lights that will reduce energy and maintenance costs, lower the city’s energy use and carbon footprint, and improve public safety.

Currently, it costs approximately $13 million a year to power and operate the city’s nearly 100,000 streetlights. The electricity costs approximately $7 million per year and maintenance costs are around $6 million per year. Standard streetlight bulbs need replacement approximately every four years, while LED bulbs last 10 years or more and use up to 50% less energy than standard bulbs.

“Kansas City’s change to LED lights will significantly cut costs, allowing us to reallocate money to taxpayer priorities like street and pothole repair and basic services,” said Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas. “This is another step in making our budget the most responsible in Kansas City’s history while maintaining our commitment to the people.

“The change to LED lights also will cut down on energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, making Kansas City greener, safer, and healthier—one small step toward a Green New Deal from local government.”

In a sample pilot program, the City’s Public Works Department installed approximately 1,5000 new LED streetlights in several neighborhoods: Barry Road, Linwood Boulevard, Bannister Road and Chouteau Trafficway, as well as in the Santa Fe and Sherwood neighborhoods. This project reduced energy costs by 46% and maintenance costs by 23%, saving $72,000 annually. It also reduced the city’s carbon footprint by 800 tons.

The Citywide LED Streetlight Conversion project is expected to begin later this year and be completed within 36 months. The project will look at different light color temperature options as well as control systems to dim and monitor light performance and operations.

The Public Works Department has issued an Invitation to Bid, which asks companies to submit bids to work on the LED Streetlight Conversion Project. To learn more about the bidding process, visit: www.KCMO.gov/city-hall/departments/general-services/bids.

The city’s proposed FY 2021-2022 Budget addresses a $70 million shortfall without staff layoffs or furloughs while maintaining essential city services.

“This is one of several strategic and innovative projects that we are implementing to address our COVID-related budget shortfall with both immediate and long-term savings to the city budget,” said City Manager Brian Platt.

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