Tuesday 1 June 2010

Shining more light on the Calton

It's taken a long, long time, but I finally recieved confirmation this morning from Land and Environmental Services that the crumbling street lights in the Calton will be being replaced.

This issue started for me with the election campaign in 2007, where local people identified the dim lighting in the area as a problem. People didn't feel safe walking about at night, as they couldn't see other people, or indeed the ground beneath them, clearly. Older people had tripped and fallen, and for my own part, I kept getting my heels stuck in the cobbled bits!

I managed to get the more modern street lights in the Millroad Drive and Chalmers Street areas upgraded with brighter bulbs, but improving the older lights in Stevenson Street, Green Street Millroad Street and Tobago Street has been more problematic.

During the storms at Christmas 2007-January 2008, a street light was brought down on Millroad Street. Luckily, it fell on to the road, so no-one got hurt and no property was damaged. Nevertheless, I asked officials in LES if it would be possible to replace the lights in the area as a result. They're all of a similar age and condition, so I reckoned it was a fair bet that if no action was taken, this could happen again. I got agreement for the works to be carried out, but due to various budget issues (and despite my chasing LES on the matter), nothing happened between then and now.

Out of the blue this morning, I recieved an email saying that works will start next Monday, 7th June, in Stevenson Street, Green Street, Millroad Street, Tobago Street, Tobago Place, Drake Street, and Arcadia Street. These works will result in new white light sources being deployed as outlined in the Council’s lighting strategy and the Lighting Network Renewal (LNR) project framework.

I just called one of the community activists who had been calling for this, and she's delighted.
It's been a long time coming, but the new 'white lights' will definitely be an improvement in the Calton area.

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