Between 2009 and 2016, Los Angeles retrofitted more than half of its streetlights with energy efficient LED street lighting as part of a long-term initiative to transition to eco-friendly, green technology. The city intends to replace all of its lights with LEDs, but even before it has completed that project, it has realized energy cost savings of more than 60%. The city’s lighting maintenance costs have also decreased dramatically. The city logged more than 70,000 annual street lighting repairs before the retrofitting project began. In four years, that number dropped to just over 46,000 repairs per year.
Los Angeles is not an outlier on the spectrum of cities that have pursued retrofitting to LED street lighting. Its cost savings, both in annual energy and in maintenance costs, are typical of other cities, and that experience is creating a groundswell of interest among cities that seek to modernize their infrastructures with technologies that will both save them money and increase their appeal to an urban populace that is interested in green and eco-friendly technologies.