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Great Neck awarded $250G for LED street lighting project

Sen. Jack Martins (R-Old Westbury) is shown in

Sen. Jack Martins (R-Old Westbury) is shown in this file photo. Credit: James Escher

Great Neck is about to get a little brighter.

State Sen. Jack Martins (R-Old Westbury) announced last week that he had secured $250,000 in state funding for the village’s LED street-lighting project.

The funds will go toward replacing the village’s 636 streetlight fixtures with LED (light-emitting diode) bulbs, which are brighter and more energy efficient than standard streetlights. The village estimates it will save at least $500,000 over 10 years. Great Neck Village Clerk Joe Gill said in an interview that the potential savings could reach $100,000 per year. Gill also said that electricity and maintenance costs for lights would decrease at least 50 percent.

“Saving taxpayers money, reducing energy costs, and protecting the environment all through the same project is a win all around,” Martins said in a news release.

Great Neck last embarked on a street-lighting project 25 years ago, Mayor Pedram Bral said in the release.

The village first considered installing LED fixtures a few years ago. However, the price of installing one light was estimated to be $1,000, which would translate to over $600,000 to replace all of the village’s streetlights. The cost has probably dropped by half since then, Gill said.

“The project we were looking at was a little cost-prohibitive,” he said. “But with everyone else doing it, the cost has come down.”

The effort joins a similar one in Great Neck Plaza, which last week adopted a “climate action plan” that included upgrading to energy-efficient LED lights.

In 2014, the Town of North Hempstead replaced 125 incandescent streetlight fixtures around Port Washington with LED fixtures, town spokeswoman Carole Trottere said, noting the replacement lamps saved about 72 percent of the energy costs.

“This project was a success for the town and the community,” Trottere said.

Other towns on Long Island, including Huntington, Islip and Brookhaven, have also invested in LED lights to help reduce energy use and costs.

“We need to provide leadership by example on this issue,” Brookhaven Town Supervisor Edward P. Romaine said in his 2015 State of the Town address announcing plans to further expand its use of alternative energy and LED lighting. “These steps will ensure that our future will not be tied exclusively to foreign oil and polluting power plants.”

Great Neck’s installation of LED lighting will likely be complete by fall after the grant is finalized and the village streetlights are audited, officials said. The final installation cost will be determined after the bidding process.

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