Jul 28, 2014 4:50 PM by Andy Koen

Ordinance would replace most of Pueblo's street lights

PUEBLO - The orange glow cast by street lights throughout Pueblo could soon change colors to a cooler white light. City Council will consider an ordinance to borrow $4.2 million in Certificates of Participation (COPs) to replace 8,725 high-pressure sodium streetlights with more energy efficient Light Emitting Diode (LED) lights.

Traffic engineer Pepper Whittlef estimates roughly 75 percent of all city street lights would be replaced under the project.  She says the upgrades should save on the city's electric bill.  

While the LED lights are more efficient, Whittlef says the larger savings would come as a result of the City taking ownership of the street lights. They are currently owned by Black Hills Energy.

"The current rate that we have for most of these street lights includes a capital expenditure," Whittlef said. "So, it's capital, electricity and maintenance. Our new rate will only include electricity and maintenance."

The City currently spends around $2 million a year on street lights and Whittlef believes the new lights will cut that expense in half.

The ordinance on tonight's agenda indicates the money would be borrowed from Wells Fargo Bank at an interest rate of 2.54 percent.

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