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October 18, 2018, 02:06:28 am
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Author Topic: Highway Lighting Costs  (Read 3966 times)
patric
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« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2017, 11:13:57 am »

During an economic downturn, the city actually turned off all the highway lights in October 2009 in an effort to save money.  About a year later and after one highway death was attributed to darkened roads, the city turned the lights back on.
http://www.tulsaworld.com/homepagelatest/tulsa-world-survey-finds-percent-of-tulsa-highway-lights-still/article_9a9ac6d4-c36c-531b-92f7-d74b1182ca90.html

One death in one year, and even that was a questionable stretch.  How many other deaths on expressways in the same year under full sunlight? 

No other city this size thinks it has to light up freeways for pedestrian-level utilization.
Even TPD reported fewer crashes when the lights were OFF, so dressing this up as a public safety crisis is a story the Tulsa World is missing out on.
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"Tulsa will lay off police and firemen before we will cut back on unnecessarily wasteful streetlights."  -- March 18, 2009 TulsaNow Forum
cannon_fodder
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« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2017, 08:22:03 am »

It is amazing how often GT's Facebook feed gets clogged with crap about highway street lights.  People really believe they need enough light to be able to play Frisbee on the  freeway in order for it to be safe.  While I can see it being beneficial for someone whose car broke down or in a construction zone, other than that I really don't see how lighting the place up like a stadium is safer.

Is there an argument that it IS safer, or is it just making people feel safer?

Also - the comments on the Tulsa World link are amazing.  I could feel Ewings frustration level growing as he tried to engage citizens. He tries so very hard to explain 1) he didnt' say he wanted to abandon road maintenance, 2) there is evidence that narrow roads are safer and increase commerce, and 3) I didn't say that!
« Last Edit: December 18, 2017, 08:47:40 am by cannon_fodder » Logged

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« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2017, 11:48:07 am »

There's a stretch of the Creek heading West coming up on Hwy 75 where the lights have been off for about a week.

It's honestly a relief on my eyes compared to the lighted sections.

I see the other vehicles better without the glare from the overhead lights.
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« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2017, 08:51:16 pm »

I will say that the new stretch of I-244 from the airport into downtown is really nice and I like the (I presume) LED lights in the center that are different than the other highway lights.  Feels very modern when you fly into town at night.  It makes the lack of lights around the IDL and even on the I-244 bridge more obvious.

The TW article stated that Tulsa is the only city in Oklahoma that maintains state and federal highway lights, why??
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patric
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« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2017, 10:03:06 pm »

I will say that the new stretch of I-244 from the airport into downtown is really nice and I like the (I presume) LED lights in the center that are different than the other highway lights.  Feels very modern when you fly into town at night.  It makes the lack of lights around the IDL and even on the I-244 bridge more obvious.

The TW article stated that Tulsa is the only city in Oklahoma that maintains state and federal highway lights, why??

Cosmetics.  Braggadocio.  That and low energy cost in a city flush with oil money (at the time).

Here was the breakdown in 2003:

Ownership and responsibility for roadway lighting in the city


           Responsibility
Owner   Maint.    Utility Cost        Use                          System Type    

PSO       PSO       City             City-owned streets        Continuous
                                              and Parkways                  & Intersections

City,      City       City             State, U.S. &                   Continuous,         
ODOT                                   Interstate Highways        High-mast & Overhead Sign

The city owns and maintains approximately 7,000 fixtures for continuous lighting of entire expressways (when actually only interchanges need be illuminated to meet federal and state standards).  About twice that amount (approximately 15,000 lights) are installed on the remainder of Tulsa’s streets, but are leased from (and maintained by) Public Service of Oklahoma.

In the preparation of this analysis, a request for information was submitted to the Mayors Performance Team seeking statistics from city departments on the following:

Total streetlights in operation,
Total non-roadway outdoor lights in operation,
Total lighted traffic control devices (including signs and signals) in operation. 

Additionally, it was requested that these numbers be broken down into fixture descriptions, locations and intended use, with annual cost (or estimates) for each.

Aside from aggregated totals (22,886 streetlights and 424 intersections with signals), the Department of Public Works reported that it would be necessary to hire a consultant to gather and compile an inventory such as needed for this analysis.

While this predicament is not unique to Tulsa (the city of Tucson, Arizona resorted to the use of Digital Orthographic Coverage to inventory it’s streetlighting system, borrowing the data from a survey originally intended to renovate floodplain contour maps),   
Dramatically contrasting directions in energy costs Vs. municipal funding have forced the hand of fate and necessitate an urgent look at a part of city living so ubiquitous that we might have never previously questioned it’s necessity.


City of Tulsa Municipal Outdoor Lighting Energy Strategy
A Report Before
The Mayor’s Performance Team
March 2003



Disclosure:  I wrote the report.
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cannon_fodder
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« Reply #20 on: December 19, 2017, 08:04:28 am »

If Tulsa is the only City in the State that maintains freeway lights - why do so many people feel it is an absolute necessity.  They speak as if it is as important as clean water or a fire department.
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« Reply #21 on: December 19, 2017, 09:23:36 am »

If Tulsa is the only City in the State that maintains freeway lights - why do so many people feel it is an absolute necessity.  They speak as if it is as important as clean water or a fire department.

The local electric utility  (PSO/OG&E) maintains them in other cities and for street lights in Tulsa. I guess Tulsa attempted to save money by maintaining highway lights themselves and they don't do it well with the funding the city has available.
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« Reply #22 on: December 19, 2017, 09:45:32 am »

I guess Tulsa attempted to save money by maintaining highway lights themselves and they don't do it well with the funding the city has available.

Copper thieves aren't helping the funding situation.
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swake
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« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2017, 10:24:38 am »

Copper thieves aren't helping the funding situation.

I Understand, but are copper thieves only stealing copper from City of Tulsa maintained lights on highways other than the Creek Turnpike? That doesn't make sense. Street lights on Tulsa streets that are maintained by PSO aren't off, not are the highway lights on the Creek Turnpike in Tulsa, and those lights are maintained by OTA.

I'm not saying that thieves are not an issue, just that The City of Tulsa's response to them is lacking when other entities that maintain lights are able to overcome the thieves. The consistent issue is COT.

 




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patric
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« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2017, 10:43:43 am »

If Tulsa is the only City in the State that maintains freeway lights - why do so many people feel it is an absolute necessity.  They speak as if it is as important as clean water or a fire department.

Electric utilities do more to "educate" the public than the departments who maintain reflective lines and signs.

The Continuous (end-to-end) lighting wouldnt be so counterproductive if they had at least used shielded lighting to remove the glare, but theres not even any discussion of that despite spending $10 million to prop up obsolete technology.
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Conan71
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« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2017, 12:32:40 pm »



I see the other vehicles better without the glare from the overhead lights.


That's a sign of old age, Townie.
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« Reply #26 on: December 19, 2017, 12:38:20 pm »

That's a sign of old age, Townie.

This.
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patric
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« Reply #27 on: December 19, 2017, 12:49:03 pm »

That's a sign of old age, Townie.

Even young eyes can have astigmatism.  Glare exacerbates the problem.
If there was a silver lining to loosing continuous expressway lighting it would have been the opportunity to see firsthand that we really didnt need them.

Paint the damn lines.
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Conan71
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« Reply #28 on: December 19, 2017, 03:21:55 pm »

Even young eyes can have astigmatism.  Glare exacerbates the problem.
If there was a silver lining to loosing continuous expressway lighting it would have been the opportunity to see firsthand that we really didnt need them.

Paint the damn lines.

All I have to do is leave home and drive in any direction out of our village to see why we don't need highway lighting.  There are some full moon nights you could almost drive with no lights at all.
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« Reply #29 on: December 19, 2017, 05:15:53 pm »

All I have to do is leave home and drive in any direction out of our village to see why we don't need highway lighting.  There are some full moon nights you could almost drive with no lights at all.

My guess is that it gets really dark with a new moon.  Can you see the Milky Way?  (Not the candy bar.)
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