A part of Columbia will be looking a bit brighter soon thanks to a major lighting project currently in the works. On Monday night, borough council voted to purchase and install new lights along Route 462, from Second Street to Union, with an approximate price tag of $300,000 plus installation costs. Each of the 60 cast iron lampposts, with attached cross arm, will be about 24 feet high and will support "lechmere-style" luminaire fixtures with LED lighting. (Additional information about the luminaires can be downloaded HERE.)
The red line on the map shows where lights will be installed.
"This project is part of the bond proceeds," explained Councillor Cleon Berntheizel. [In November 2016, council voted to approve a series of general obligation bonds that can be used to finance capital projects and other things.]
Berntheizel said that the project was initially planned "years ago" and that electric conduits are already in place along the route. He also noted that this is the first phase of the project, with a planned second phase continuing to Malleable Road.
Public Works Director Ron Miller said the lampposts have an added benefit, in that they are high enough to accommodate larger Christmas ornaments. Miller added that the posts will replace any fixtures and posts currently state-owned.
Drawing of lamppost with cross arm and luminaire
Miller said U.S. Congress's infrastructure bill might provide additional funding and that PPL could provide rebates due to the use of LED lighting. Mayor Leo Lutz added, "I feel certain with Columbia Borough's administrative team, that if money can be found anywhere, they will find it." Of the undertaking, Lutz noted, "This is more of a beautification project."
In a unanimous vote, council passed the measure but without discussing specific prices. Later in the citizen comments section of the meeting, Frank Doutrich asked about the omission. Assistant Borough Manager Rebecca Denlinger said the figure is in the community development minutes. Council President Kelly Murphy concurred. "It was talked about at length at community development," he said. Ron Miller then provided the roughly $300,000 figure for the cost of lights, not including installation.
In reference to the lighting project, the following is an excerpt from the December 2017 Community Development meeting minutes, with no specific figures discussed:
"The Committee asked for Rebecca to work with Ron Miller to provide the cost for the street lighting project to run either from the Rt. 462 Bridge to Union Street or from the Rt. 462 Bridge to Malleable Road."
The January 2018 Community Development minutes are not yet posted.