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Traffic light switch to LED underway

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FORT FRANCES—Starting this week, all of the traffic lights in Fort Frances will be switched over to more energy-efficient Light Emitting Diode (LED) versions, Fort Frances Power Corp. CEO Jim Kibiuk said Thursday.

He noted the FFPC hopes to convert all of the lights at all the intersections in town by the end of October—meaning a total of 336 modules (bulbs) will be installed in the next few weeks.

The LED conversion is a $25,000 project, but Kibiuk noted the lights—which bring with them an expected 75-80 percent reduction in kWh consumption—will pay for themselves through the subsequent energy savings to the town.

“As of right now, the electricity cost-savings alone to the town for one year is going to be approximately $9,000,” he remarked.

“The bulbs have a payback period of about two-and-a-half years and they are expected to last 10, so there’s going to be a significant savings over the life of the LED modules to the Town of Fort Frances,” Kibiuk added.

The new LED light also will need less maintenance (because the bulbs have a longer lifespan) and will increase public safety (because they’re brighter).

For those curious as to what LED traffic lights look like, two sets in town already have been converted in the past year as test cases.

These are the primary east-facing lights at King’s Highway and McIrvine Road, as well as the south-facing secondary lights at Central Avenue and Third Street West.

(Primary lights are the higher sets which extend over the road while secondary ones are those affixed to a pole at a lower height).

The FFPC had hoped to start the LED conversion a few months ago but, as previously reported, the lights were back-ordered.

With every utility in Ontario trying to get this done for their respective municipality, there’s been a waiting list as to when bulbs are available, Kibiuk explained.

(Fort Frances Times)

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