Why do street lights come on in broad daylight?

In the Ponsardin district of Reims, streetlights are lit in broad daylight. This raises questions from local residents during energy conservation. The City of Reims explains.

For the past few days, at the beginning of May 2022, residents and passers-by who had wandered through a neighborhood of Reims, the rue Ponsardin sector, a major artery in the city centre, lifted their heads with some questioning. Because many streetlights are on in broad daylight. At a time when the price of electricity rises and everyone needs to save, the situation raises question marks. At local cafe Le Ponsardin, the waiter asks himself this question like his customers. We talked to the Municipality of Reims to shed light on the issue.

Why are the streetlights lit constantly, especially in broad daylight, in this center of Reims?

Currently, rue Ponsardin is performing a public lighting renovation operation for the city centre, which is part of a global plan launched 5 years ago. This operation aims to replace dilapidated and energy-intensive equipment with more efficient equipment.

What are these studies for?

On this occasion, the entire Ponsardin street will benefit from lighting with new lanterns equipped with LED sources. These provide stronger looking lighting. But this is due to the color temperature, which is warm white, although the power and therefore the power consumption is lower. Uniformity will also perform better.

How long will the tests take?

This project is not finished. To date, the first phase of replacing the lanterns on the façade has been completed. On this occasion, daytime commissioning (in broad daylight, editor’s note) was carried out during installation and electrical connection.

The second phase will take place in the last two weeks of May and will be about replacing the mountings on the poles. Therefore, at the moment, two types of light sources coexist at night on rue Ponsardin: new lanterns in the façade equipped with LEDs (with a warm white color temperature) and existing street lamps equipped with sodium sources, awaiting replacement. orange-yellow color temperature. This transitional phase may possibly create visual disturbance, but is necessary to ensure the safety of public lighting while all work is completed.

What will be the result?

At the end of this phase, an efficient and more harmonious night lighting system will be implemented for the entire rue Ponsardin. It is reminded that the mission of public lighting is to illuminate and secure the public space, which are sidewalks and roads. Photometric measurements will be taken at night to comply with applicable standards.

The renovation of the Ponsardin street public lighting is part of an electricity-efficient operation that covers several streets:

  • Replacement of 18 lanterns between the Cérès roundabout and Jamot square, allowing the installed power to be divided by 3 (250W to 83W per lantern))accompanied by a half reduction in power from midnight to 5 am.
  • On rue Ponsardin, swapping 9 lighthouses between rue Gerbert and rue Montlaurent allowed the installed power to be almost halved (from 150W to 83W per lantern)).

What about the energy savings?

While the installed power of these 27 lighting points was 6,435 W before the renovation works, it was 2,241 W after completion. Also, thanks to the lower power, the annual consumption will be divided by 5.7 (from 25,740 kW to just 4,482 kW)) this will make it possible to have an estimated energy consumption cost of 1,070 €/year compared to 3,860 €/year before the studies.

This ongoing public lighting renovation program follows two previous operations in the city centre. TOIn 2015, the section between rue de Montlaurent and the boulevard Victor Hugo was renovated with 7 light points and switched from 250W to 140W beacons (30% change according to the heart of the night for 6 hours)

In 2017, the renovation of the section between Place Jamot and Rue Gerbert with 10 light points and the transition from 150W lanterns to 99W LED lanterns were accompanied by a decrease in power.