Shedding some light on community concerns
Inverleith councillor Lesley Hinds has asked officers to carry out an urgent appraisal of new street lights following complaints from local residents.
Councillor Hinds chairs the city council’s Transport, Infrastructure and Environment Commitee, which has responsibility for street lighting. She said last night: ““Following a very successful pilot project in 2012, the Council is replacing street lights across the city with new, more energy-efficient and more environmentally friendly lighting. In particular, this will result in brighter and clearer lighting throughout the night.
“A number of residents have been in touch regarding lighting in certain streets and, having now visited them myself, I have asked officers to carry out an appraisal and report back as soon as possible.”
Forth councillor Cammy Day – who is also the city’s community safety ‘champion’ – also discussed ‘some concerns’ with the lighting team yesterday.
Many North Edinburgh residents have expressed anger over the brightness and quality of new ‘eco-lights’ installed across the area over the last week. They believe the lighting makes the streets unsafe and could result in more crime and antisocial behaviour.
However the city council says the lighting project will achieve:
- Reduced energy costs. Energy costs are expected to double in the next decade. The use of modern lighting equipment will greatly assist in reducing the impact of increasing energy costs.
- Improved environmental performance. This new equipment is more energy efficient and lamps have a longer life span.
- Provide continuous lighting throughout the night. A number of local authorities have been switching off lights for periods of time during the night to save energy. The City of Edinburgh Council is not currently considering this option.
- Compliance with EU directives.
- Brighter and clearer lighting. White lights improve colour recognition and improves images captured on CCTV at night. They also allow clothing colours and car registration numbers to be more easily identified.
The council also cites an October 2012 pilot project undertaken in the Gilmerton and Saughton Mains areas of the city: 271 lights were changed and the results from consultation with local households achieved around 90% satisfaction levels.