A multi-million-pound council project to replace and upgrade over 23,000 streetlights in Croydon has been completed after a five-year programme.
In 2011 contractors at Skanska started replacing streetlights across the borough, and on Wednesday the last column installed was switched on in Fell Road, Croydon.
The upgrade is part of a 25-year, £151m Private Finance Initiative contract that both Croydon Council and Lewisham Council have with Croydon and Lewisham Lighting Services Ltd – a joint venture between John Laing and Skanska.
The contract, to install and maintain the new streetlights on the boroughs’ roads, council housing estates, parks and open spaces, is expected to save around £14 million over the 25-year period.
Wednesday’s milestone event in Fell Road was witnessed by Croydon Council’s cabinet member for transport and the environment, Councillor Stuart King, plus representatives from Croydon and Lewisham Lighting Services Ltd and their subcontractor Skanska.
The 23,630 new Croydon streetlights:
• Each contain an improved lamp that lasts four years rather than three
• Are built to last 30 years
• Are more environmentally-friendly – the project will save Croydon and Lewisham the equivalent of around 30 tonnes of carbon emissions over the 25-year period
• Give off a better-quality light that shines on a bigger area, meaning fewer lamps are needed
New technology means faulty lights are reported automatically to a central computer monitored by Skanska staff, who can then carry out faster repairs. When the old lights were first installed decades ago, broken lights had to be spotted by engineers or reported by members of the public.
Skanska staff have also finished removing 24,188 old lamp columns, some of which could not be replaced until the programme was complete to avoid breaking the local electrical circuit.
Simon Woodford, projects director for Skanska, said: “The new lighting allows for easier maintenance to ensure the public receive an improved service, and gives the authorities an asset which is due to last for many years into the future.”
Councillor Stuart King, cabinet member for transport and environment
“I want to thank our staff and contractors who have worked on this huge project, which means that every neighbourhood in Croydon has better-quality, longer-lasting streetlights that will make our roads brighter and safer.”