40 percent of Detroit's street lights are out

Dec. 10, 2013 at 9:34 PM

DETROIT, Dec. 10 (UPI) -- Detroit officials said Tuesday they aim to complete an overhaul of Motor City's street lights -- 40 percent of which are dark -- by the end of 2016.

The city's new Public Lighting Authority is backing off a detailed ZIP code-by-ZIP code schedule it recently released, saying the end-2016 target is its only concrete goal, the Detroit Free Press reported.

The original plan included some start dates next month, but a delay of a month or two is now likely.

"It's dark on every side street around here, and even walking down East 7 Mile it's very, very dark," Michelle Hagerman, 40, a supervisor in the city's Department of Elections and a homeowner in the area of I-75 and East 7 Mile, told the newspaper. On 7 Mile, she said, "there might be a light every so often, but not many."

The three-year project includes the reduction of the current 88,000-fixture system to about 46,000 lights.

Complex transformer problems and underground cable issues on top of theft, delayed maintenance and lack of investment mean the only solution is a complete overhaul of the system, experts said.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes last week approved a $210 million proposal to pay for the lighting project.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more news from UPI.com
Related UPI Stories
share with facebook
share with twitter
Trending Stories