New addition adds light to Hi-Crest neighborhood

TOPEKA (KSNT) – A project from Westar Energy kicks off by shedding a different light on one Topeka neighborhood.

“What we’ve done is gone through the entire neighborhood and replaced the older street lights with new LED technology,” Gina Penzig said about the new streetlights in the Hi-Crest neighborhood.

After a violent summer, the company wanted to help out the community. Penzig, the communications director for the company said Westar replaced not just the bulb but the entire top fixture.

These replacements will happen throughout the Topeka community as street lights burn out, but Penzig said the company saw a need to help create a safer neighborhood.

“Rather than take that slower route, to go ahead upgrade all the lights to go ahead and help with public safety,” she said. According to Penzig, there are street lights on every corner in the neighborhood and in the middle of most blocks.

The change in bulb and fixture means the light hits more of the streets and sidewalks below. In comparison to the round yellow light bulbs and round fixtures, Penzig said these LED bulbs and flat top fixtures force the light down and out over the area not up.

Penzig did not have a cost for the project in Hi-Crest but said any cost incurred upfront with more expensive bulbs even out in the long run with how long the lights last.

She also said there is no hard deadline to have all the lights in and around Topeka changed to the LED bulbs.

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