Kingman Park Among First in Line for Smart Street Lighting

The Smart Street Lighting project will install new LED light bulbs city wide but won’t alter light-pole placement or the design of historic globes and shades.

Kingman Park Among First in Line for Smart Street Lighting

by Hilary Russell

Posted March 22, 2023

DC’s $309-million Smart Street Lighting Project is poised to convert the city’s jumble of 72,000-plus incandescent and high-pressure-sodium street light bulbs to LED technology that is monitored and controlled remotely.  Installation will begin in the next few weeks in Wards 5, 7, and 8.  During this phase, the project will add wireless access points in underserved communities in Wards 7 and 8, thereby advancing DC’s stated goal of citywide broadband access.

When completed in May 2024, the Smart Street Lighting Project is projected to reduce the city’s greenhouse-gas emissions by 38,000 tons per year and enhance public safety, including for pedestrians and cyclists.  Its monitoring and control system will eliminate 311 calls to report broken or malfunctioning streetlights and ensure quick repairs.  The new LED bulbs are projected to reduce light pollution, though they will be brighter than those in current use (27000k versus 24000k).  Each can be dimmed on request, but not below approved public-safety levels and only once, according to DDOT.

Attendees at the March 14 meeting of the Friends of Kingman Park learned that such a request must be coordinated through Advisory Neighborhood Commissioners (ANCs).  Commissioners in ANC 7D, 7C, and 7E will among those inaugurating this service for their constituents and DDOT.


Commissioner Ebony Payne, who represents ANC7DO5, said she is pleased “the project will bring more internet access and that the new streetlights will reduce the city’s greenhouse gas emissions…”

Kingman Park residents will turn to Commissioner Ebony Payne if they have issues with the new lighting. Some of them have noted the need to brighten dark streets to enhance public safety, especially if they live on a block with broken streetlights. Others expressed some apprehension about the new lights being too bright and possibly disrupting sleep patterns and circadian rhythms. As Payne put it, “The real test will be once neighbors experience the new brighter lights after installation. I am reserving my judgement until then.”

Residents of Ward 6 are in Group 3. Installation of its new LED street lights won’t begin until all the work is completed in Group 1 (wards 5, 7, and 8) and Group 2 (wards 2, 3, and 4).

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One response to “Kingman Park Among First in Line for Smart Street Lighting

  1. Mark Ugoretz

    New high tech lights were installed on Mass. Ave NE over a year ago at great expense. Are they the same or different lights? If different, isn’t it an incredible waste of money to again replace them? Something’s missing here. ________________________ Mark Ugoretz 1000 Massachusetts Ave. NE Washington, DC 20002