29 July 2011

A PFI scheme which will see Northamptonshire County Council’s lighting stock replaced within five years has been given final approval by the Department for Transport.

In June the county council’s cabinet approved the scheme, under which new street lights would use 40 per cent less energy on a like-for-like basis when compared with the existing stock and would also offer a uniform, white light rather than the patchy orange glow of ‘traditional’ lights.

The scheme would allow the county council to replace the lamp units and electronics of all streetlights and allow for the replacement of the lighting columns where necessary.

Cllr Andre Gonzalez De Savage, county council cabinet member for infrastructure and public protection, said: “I’m delighted that we have received final government approval for this very important scheme, which is a great opportunity to replace the lighting stock in the county with street-lighting which is fit for purpose.

“People will see a real difference in the quality of the lighting and it is also much cheaper to run.

“There are also advantages with the new technology being able to provide greater flexibility and in an age where consideration of the environment is increasingly important, there will be real benefits with carbon reduction targets.”

The PFI scheme will provide the maintenance of the street lights for a 25 year period and current technology also means that many faults can be detected remotely, removing the need for manual patrols.

The PFI contract will start in October and the first lights could be replaced towards the end of this year.