Crews near completion on Broad Street lights

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A project that began more than nine months ago to replace street lights and traffic signals on Broad Street is nearing completion.

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The switch has been flipped on for many of the 129 street lights and traffic signals on Broad Street that were replaced as part of a nine-month, $2.7 million federally funded job.  ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/STAFF
The switch has been flipped on for many of the 129 street lights and traffic signals on Broad Street that were replaced as part of a nine-month, $2.7 million federally funded job.
Meg Mirshak
Staff Writer
Twitter: @megmirshak
E-mail | 706-823-3228

The switch has been flipped on for many of the 129 street lights and traffic signals at the Broad Street intersections between Fifth and 12th streets, said Steve Cassell, the traffic engineer for the city. The project should be done by Dec. 15, but the contractor still needs to inspect the lights and demount the old poles.

“It was an old system that was inadequate. Downtown was a dark area. They didn’t light the sidewalks,” he said.

The $2.7 million federally funded project should brighten sidewalks and sunken parking wells with new light poles that each have two lights: one high above the street and a second closer to the sidewalk. Sections of lights, each controlled by separate circuits, were turned on gradually over the past two weeks.

“There’s going to be some overlap. Right now, we have two systems running at the same time,” Cassell said.

Repairing sidewalks on Broad Street will continue throughout December, he said. Crews had to break up portions of sidewalks during the project to lay fiber-optic cables and install control boxes. Although the project started late and the original July 31 completion date was pushed back, Cassell said crews were never behind schedule. Crews worked smoothly and with little problems.

“There’s a lot of stuff underground over there. I’m surprised they only hit two gas lines,” he said.

Brighter lights in downtown were necessary, said Margaret Woodard, the executive director of the Downtown Development Authority of Augusta.

“It’s a project that was well worth the time and the effort,” Woodard said. “When something’s well-lit, it’s more secure. It’s safer.”

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Chillen 11/29/11 - 08:57 am
Funny. The first light pole

Funny. The first light pole in the picture is only partially lit. Looks like a typical government job.

Why would federal "obama money" have been available for this? Must be some "green" initiative. Or maybe Big Sis' light pole spy cams were part of the deal.

Hey, at least we'll now be able to see who knocks us on the head for our wallet or who is begging for money.

Little Lamb
Little Lamb 11/29/11 - 09:42 am
I agree with the security

I agree with the security aspects of lighting the sidewalks adequately. That is where people walk, work, and play. However, it is a waste of money and a degradation of a star-lit sky to light up the skyline. There is no benefit for that wasteful practice. It is called light pollution. You might want to Google it.

Here is a pretty good web site on the subject.

madgerman 11/29/11 - 09:50 am
Wow. We got 8 new light

Wow. We got 8 new light fixtures for only $337,500.00 each. What a deal for one of the stakeholders ion the local area. Now the real question. I have a light pole across from my house and I am billed for it every year. Who pays for the lights outside of the businesses or apartments downtown? Want to bet we all do?

LuvMyTown 11/29/11 - 10:08 am
The best thing to happen in

The best thing to happen in downtown since the Business Improvement District. A real plus!

seenitB4 11/29/11 - 12:24 pm
I'll have to say I like the

I'll have to say I like the lights.....adds to the security of downtown.

countyman 11/29/11 - 01:32 pm
Madergman... The picture

Madergman... The picture includes one block of Broad street. The entire project runs from 13th-5th street in the Central Business District.

Keep in mind the project also included new lights in the parking bays, the renovation of sidewalks, and new traffic signals...

Chillen... Every new light will be working once the project is completed, and the older light poles featured in the picture will be removed..

TrulyWorried 11/29/11 - 03:53 pm
This space would not be

This space would not be complete without at least one 'rant'!!
Merry Christmas to one and all that believe in it!

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