Evenings would no longer be dark on most of the streets in towns across the state.
In what can be referred to as the biggest streetlight installation project in recent times, Bihar Urban Infrastructure Development Corporation (Buidco) is going to put up 1,000 light-emitting diodes (LED) posts in Patna over the next eight months.
From a few streetlights till the late 90s, Patna and other towns started using high power sodium vapour bulbs in the last decade. Then came the compact florescent lights (CFL) and now the roads would be illuminated using LEDs.
Patna apart, another 1,100 streetlights would be installed in 12 other towns, including Gaya, Darbhanga and Muzaffarpur among others.
The ambitious streetlight project would not only mean more illumination on streets but it would also lead to major energy savings. According to experts, the LED streetlights save up to 25-60 per cent of electricity and last nearly four times as compared to conventional sodium vapour lights. The LEDs last for around 40,000-90,000 hours, whereas the conventional sodium vapour lights last for around 15,000-24,000 hours only.
The cost of these LEDs is though a bit high around thrice the conventional lights but its long life saves the frequent expenses in the form of replacement of conventional bulbs, ignitor, ballast and luminaire.
An estimated outlay of Rs 24.39 crore would be used for installation of these energy efficient and cost effective LEDs. In order to ensure sufficient illumination on the streets, the LEDs, on the other hand, will be installed on 8m poles at a distance of 30m.
Highlighting the reason behind selecting LED under this project, a senior Buidco official said: The energy-efficient LED streetlight system would allow people to travel on brighter roads, in safety and comfort, while reducing energy use and costs. The funds under this project would be provided by the state government and the firm to supply and install the lights would operate it for a period of one year.
Buidco has initiated the bidding process for the streetlight project and it is expected to be complete by end of March. The actual work related to supply and installation of the lights would be carried out over six months in Patna and four months in other places.
At present, there are around 6,000 streetlights in Patna. However, except for the VIP areas and roads like Bailey Road and Hardinge Road, rest of the city remain in darkness because of defunct streetlights.