By Ken Liebeskind
The Plainville Citizen
ESCO Energy Services, the Massachusetts company awarded the LED street lighting project in Plainville, began converting more than 1,400 high-pressure sodium lights with LED street lights on Nov. 2.
“They started at the north end of town and they’re doing about 60 to 80 lights per day and should finish the job around Thanksgiving,” Town Manager Robert Lee said.
Plainville is the first Connecticut town to install LED street lights with ESCO in a program that was coordinated by the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities.
Kevin Maloney, a CCM spokesperson, said, “Plainville is a model that encourages other towns to go this route. They’re the first to take this important progressive step to provide lighting in a more cost effective way that will generate long and short term savings.”
Jack Hanley, director of business development at ESCO said the cost of installing LED lights is $304 per fixture, which will cost the town $467,000. But $187,000 will be saved through an Eversource rebate, reducing the cost to $280,000. The town will also save $77,000 annually on the reduced energy cost of LED lights – $33,000 for LED lights compared with $100,000 for sodium lamps.
Lee said the move to LED lights “is a better way to do things. We’ll save money on electric costs and get better performance from the LED lights.”
Plainville also plans to install chips in some of the LED lights in the downtown area that will enable free Wifi access for residents. “We’re looking for advertisers who want to be on the network so we can generate revenue to pay for operational costs,” Lee said.
ESCO will work with the town to negotiate an agreement with Comcast, ATT or another Internet carrier to provide Wifi service.