City Experiments with Solar-Powered Lights

Friday, April 23, 2004

A solar-powered crosswalk warning light system, billed as the first of its kind in North America, was installed Thursday in Victoria on Southgate Street. The wireless lights, worth about $9,500, were built by Carmanah Technologies, a city-based company which first introduced the technology in Europe in 2001.

The lights are located on Southgate between Douglas and Quadra streets at a crosswalk that provides pedestrian access to Beacon Hill Park. The system is powered by a solar panel, eliminating the need for wiring at a location that could have affected tree roots, city staff said.

Council was given a demonstration of the lights, which were on display in a committee room in recognition of Earth Day, celebrated with a variety of events Thursday. The solar warning lights are more expensive than regular lights. But city engineering staff said there may be other locations in the city where they could offer a practical alternative.