Wilmington Takes New Steps To Become Smarter, More Technologically Advanced

Mayor Mike Purzycki has announced that Wilmington will be taking more steps toward becoming a smarter, more technologically advanced city. City council has approved a $2.3 million Administration project to install 1,700 LED energy-efficient street lights with SMART node technology. The plan is headed for a spring start, and is expected to take about a year to complete. 

The City will fund the project with a $2.1 million loan from the Efficient Energy Investment Fund (EEIF) administered by the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC). A $173,000 DNREC grant will cover the remaining cost of the project. It is estimated that the City will more than cover the cost of the 20-year loan through expected annual energy savings of at least $150,000, or approximately $3 million or more over the life of the loan.

“As I said when we first proposed the LED lighting system early in 2019, Wilmington is becoming a smarter City and we should all be proud of that,” said Mayor Purzycki. “We are preparing ourselves for what promises to be an exciting and challenging future dominated by ever-expanding technology and the use of data,” said the Mayor. “LED lighting will give the entire City a new look and feel and it will add to our improving public safety efforts, but it will also make us a more cost-efficient, fiscally responsible and environmentally friendly City.”

Mayor Purzycki and Public Works Commissioner Kelly Williams listed numerous benefits that the LED lights will provide:

  • LED lights that can last 20 years or more
  • Using 1,000,000 kWh less electricity every year and a reduction of 705.36 metric tons of CO2
  • Full light dimming and switching capabilities for more brightly lit areas when needed
  • Automatic light outage indicators for faster street light replacement
  • Built-in motion detector interface
  • Reduced maintenance time and costs
  • Enhanced safety and security for City neighborhoods
  • Annual savings that are verified and monitored via an embedded power meter

Other future benefits could include:

  • Monitoring of on-street parking to provide residents and visitors with ideal times for parking and available parking locations
  • Traffic management systems to transmit information about traffic flow, making daily commutes more efficient and time-saving
  • Emergency management and public notification systems to help first responders make more informed decisions and accelerate emergency response by accurately directing personnel to emergency locations and keeping the public informed
  • A detection system that directs police to a specific location during calls for service
  • Air quality, weather and noise monitoring, as well as data collection to develop solutions to quality-of-life issues
  • Radiation detection readings that can be used by emergency personnel

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