The project is expected to be completed by March

Chennai Corporation’s new programme to improve lighting in the city will focus on replacement of around 60,000 old streetlights in eight added zones.

Mayor Saidai S. Duraisamy at a meeting on Tuesday announced the commencement of the programme to improve streetlighting system in eight zones.

The initiative of the civic body is likely to be a stepping stone for replacement of tubelights with energy-saving lights such as induction lamps, LED lights and compact fluorescent lamps in Tiruvottiyur, Manali, Madhavaram, Ambattur, Valasaravakkam, Alandur, Perungudi and Sholinganallur. All the new 60,000 streetlights will be LED lights as they last five times longer than sodium vapour lamps. The initiative is expected to bring down the level of energy consumption by 25 per cent and save 36 lakh units in the coming year. The actual target of the civic body is the installation of one lakh such energy saving lights. The civic body also chose the LED streetlights for their aesthetic merit.

The streetlighting system in the 426 sq km of the city has just 2.2 lakh streetlights, and the expanded areas have only 88,000 old streetlights. After expansion, the Chennai Corporation claimed to have brought down the percentage of streetlights that are not burning in the eight added zones to less than 5 per cent.

Even though roads in seven zones ie. Tondiarpet, Royapuram, Thiru-Vi-Ka-Nagar, Anna Nagar, Teynampet, Kodambakkam and Adyar of old city limits have superior illumination with a very low percentage of ‘not-burning' streetlights, the added areas continue to have old system of illumination adopted by many panchayats earlier.

Most of the new streetlights in key stretches are expected to be commissioned by March.

However, the Corporation’s norm of a minimum of 25 metre distance between two adjacent streetlights will continue to be violated in many areas of such added zones even after commissioning of 60,000 steetlights. The Chennai Corporation has planned to erect new poles in such areas after completion of the work. Most of the existing streetlights fixed on Reinforced Cement Concrete poles in added areas would be replaced according to the norms of the Chennai Corporation.

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