San Diego is illuminating its downtown district with GE Lighting's intelligent lighting system, including LED street lighting. San Diego is the first city in the U.S. to adopt GE's LightGrid technology. The system, installed this past spring delivers energy-efficient lighting that will save the city more than a quarter-million dollars in energy costs each year.

Benefits of the project include:
--Energy savings to San Diego estimated at $254,000 annually,
--Full implementation of project will include replacing 3,000 city lamps,
--The LightGrid system has GPS location capabilities, allowing for an accurate measurement of energy usage by individual streetlight, and

--The custom-engineered decorative streetlights in the system have embedded wireless controls technology that retains the fixtures’ historic appearance.

“The city of San Diego chose to move to LED street lighting largely because it allows for customizable brightness,” says Lorie Cosio-Azar. She is project officer at the city of San Diego Environmental Services Department. “It provides a beautiful quality of illumination, and we know that it will enhance the downtown district, creating a more pleasing environment for residents, business owners and the customers who spend time there shopping, dining and just enjoying the charm of the neighborhood.” She adds that the new energy-efficient lighting setup will significantly trim the city’s spending and maintenance needs.

GE Lighting’s LightGrid is an outdoor wireless control system for street and roadway lights. The technology inside this system allows for remote operation and monitoring of all fixtures through a web-enabled central management system. Designed with municipalities and transportation departments in mind, LightGrid offers several features that are outlined here.

GPN learned of some additional benefits of the LightGrid technology in a recent chat with GE Lighting’s Mark Wilbur at GE’s Nela Park facility in East Cleveland, Ohio. Wilbur is national application engineer, lighting controls at GE Lighting. He told GPN that with LightGrid, there’s no need for cities to do a labor-intensive physical asset audit of their streetlights. “The LightGrid technology has a one-button asset management report that you can print daily or deliver to agency executives daily. Agencies can eliminate the whole physical asset audit task. This technology can save upwards of a million dollars in fixture audits. It can eliminate the need to have audit crews go out and physically touch and audit the entire fixture universe-deployment in a city. LightGrid can provide audit data for the whole system at the touch of a button.”

Wilbur told GPN that the LightGrid technology speeds maintenance of lighting systems. “The network sends diagnostics reports to the repair crew before they get to the site. That way the control center can send out the right crew with the right tools—and the crew has all the information needed. The network confirms whether the power is on, how many lights are not working and other details. The idea here is asset management—it’s a huge difference-maker in maintenance.”

In the video, GE Lighting’s Rick Freeman explains how GE's LightGrid Wireless Outdoor Control helps municipalities negotiate better rates with utilities.

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