The lights shine clear through the sodium haze

Pommy bastard 27 April 2009 43

While out on my early evening perambulation with my dogs on the Northside the other evening, I noticed that a number of the street lights had been changed from the usual dull orange, to a sharp and bright white light. Ok, no problem with that. A few evenings later I noticed that whole streets had been changed over to these.

Now my street has been converted to these “Auschwitz spotlights”.

It’s not a case of replacing bulbs when they blow, but of replacing whole street sections. Which must be an expense. The new lights are bright and sharp, too bright for my tastes. They also cover a wide arc, which is fine for walking, but not so good if they come in through your bedroom window, and like me, you need pitch black to sleep.

Anyone have a clue as to the rationale and rhyme and reason for these new lights?

Are they “an experiment”, “more green,” “less expensive in the long run,” “mandated”, “just done to annoy Pommy”?

The lights shine clear through the sodium haze
The night draws near and the daylight fades
But there’s a voice in the distance quiet and clear
Saying something that I never ever wanted to hear


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43 Responses to The lights shine clear through the sodium haze
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VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy VYBerlinaV8_the_one_they_all_copy 1:56 pm 28 Apr 09

Hopefully they don’t improve the lighting in the carpark at Dickson Woolies. We wouldn’t want to spoil our local lovers lane now would we?

peterh peterh 1:28 pm 28 Apr 09

trevar said :

I would like to see one of these new suburbs trial having lights in a kind of ‘kerb’ at the side of the footpath, on the house side, so they shine away from the nearest house. Would fulfill the need for lights on the path itself, without creating so much light pollution.

just paint the footpaths with glow in the dark paint. you would be sure to see the footpath then.

trevar trevar 7:36 am 28 Apr 09

I would like to see one of these new suburbs trial having lights in a kind of ‘kerb’ at the side of the footpath, on the house side, so they shine away from the nearest house. Would fulfill the need for lights on the path itself, without creating so much light pollution.

Cletus 2 Cletus 2 1:23 am 28 Apr 09

Funny, I feel much less safe when walking a lit up path but with darkness around me. It’s much easier for anyone else to see me and much harder for me to see them.

DrKarl DrKarl 12:21 am 28 Apr 09

I thought the orange lights were used in Canberra to reduce the effect of light interference on Stromlo observatory.

Stromlo Burnt Down

They may last longer and use less energy

BerraBoy68 BerraBoy68 10:40 pm 27 Apr 09

We’re now at post #38 and I’m the first to comment that PB’s pic isn’t straight. Where are all the normal critiques of PB’s work?

I like the effort to keep the camera level though PB and now all we have to do is let the ACT Gov’t know they’re building lopsided roads:)

An JB, 3 set of curtains? What were you thinking? Think of the additional fading when daylight savings comes back around!

bd84 bd84 9:05 pm 27 Apr 09

zztopless said :

Just moved into a new place in Belconnen, on a battle axe block. There is a pathway that runs behind the house and a park behind that. The light just outside the house (and main bedroom), is way too bright and lights up the whole side of the house makes the room quite lit up, even with the blinds shut. It’s a rental place, so I can’t really install a proper curtain setup…anyone have any suggestions?

Call ACTEWAGL and complain.. I’ve seen/heard of occasions where they’ve been able to modify the lighting for residents’ comfort.

Like the lightbulbs in your house, the lights are normally a bit brighter when they first install them, they get a bit more dull after a couple of weeks. You also get used to them too.

deezagood deezagood 8:35 pm 27 Apr 09

No – I agree with that; muted light is vastly preferable … but some posters have suggested no lights at all, which I think would be a bad thing.

zztopless zztopless 7:58 pm 27 Apr 09

deezagood: I agree, but the issue is whether they need to be so bright and shining into people’s windows…

deezagood deezagood 7:50 pm 27 Apr 09

You don’t realise how necessary street lights are until they are no longer there. Our whole street’s lights went down over Christmas (ACTEW wouldn’t admit this, but I reckon the bloke down the road with the Griswaldesque Christmas display was to blame) and it was really dark and creepy. Scary even just putting the bins out. Tripped over objects on the way to my early morning run. Couldn’t wait to get the street lights back.

Granny Granny 6:43 pm 27 Apr 09

; )

weeziepops weeziepops 5:45 pm 27 Apr 09

#27 – Granny, you’re the best… LMAO

zztopless zztopless 5:45 pm 27 Apr 09

Just moved into a new place in Belconnen, on a battle axe block. There is a pathway that runs behind the house and a park behind that. The light just outside the house (and main bedroom), is way too bright and lights up the whole side of the house makes the room quite lit up, even with the blinds shut. It’s a rental place, so I can’t really install a proper curtain setup…anyone have any suggestions?

andym andym 5:22 pm 27 Apr 09

Streetlighting initiatives
Current streetlight maintenance objectives are focused on reducing energy consumption and maintaining public safety. In recent years, Roads ACT has sought to replace mercury vapour lighting along the main road networks with relatively energy efficient high pressure sodium lighting. Further, as newer suburbs are developed, high pressure sodium lighting is installed along roads, and paths, where necessary. For the Tuggeranong Foreshore project the redesigned lighting uses 69 x 150 watt metal halide luninaires, which replace the 119 x 2 x 80 watt mercury vapour luminaires. That equates to a saving of $3,755/annum or 35.9 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per annum.

Lighting in shopping areas and carparks is being improved with the installation of cut off white light. White light is the clearest lighting available and this is important for maintaining pedestrian safety. Cut off lighting means that light shining up into the night sky is reduced. Thus the darkness of the night sky is maintained, you can still see the stars!

According to TAMS website

shiny flu shiny flu 5:02 pm 27 Apr 09

Having not seen the lamps… could they be LED lights?

I read something on a news site a while ago about cities trialling them.

grunge_hippy grunge_hippy 4:59 pm 27 Apr 09

i would go walking at night if it were better lit. i have a morbid fear of twisting my ankle on the dodgy footpaths around my neighbourhood.

Granny Granny 4:15 pm 27 Apr 09

Not that women should complain, though. The rapists and murderers have had such hard lives that it’s probably inconsiderate of victims to contemplate defending themselves or even running away. Besides, it’s not the criminals’ fault because they were drunk or on drugs. They just couldn’t help themselves.

If only these vigilante people who dare to voice an objection to lenient sentencing would just STFU and accept that the judiciary don’t care about them and crawl off and die – preferably assisted by some conveniently recently paroled criminal.

Granny Granny 3:48 pm 27 Apr 09

You tell me? Depends on who the judiciary decides to release back onto the dark streets and carparks that week while women are out walking or returning to their cars, I suppose.

seekay seekay 3:42 pm 27 Apr 09

I often wonder about why we need streetlights. It makes sense along major roads and intersections where there is likely to be traffic after dark, but illuminating the suburbs seems like a waste of electricity to me.

So… pedestrians have to use torches? Flaming brands?

Mr Waffle Mr Waffle 3:40 pm 27 Apr 09

I often wonder about why we need streetlights. It makes sense along major roads and intersections where there is likely to be traffic after dark, but illuminating the suburbs seems like a waste of electricity to me.

Not everybody drives home. The peasants getting off the bus, the cyclists, and the dog walkers all need to be able to see, too. I walk home through my suburb from the gym every second night, so the streetlights mean I don’t have to walk around with a flashlight in the dark like a horror movie.

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