A slide from a PATH Streetlight Conversion Project presentation for the City of Brentwood

A slide from a PATH Streetlight Conversion Project presentation for the City of Brentwood

The City of Brentwood is exploring the option of upgrading some 3,000 streetlights to LED bulbs in an effort to save on energy costs.

The Brentwood City Commission unanimously approved the resolution during last week’s City Commission meeting which will see the city enter into an agreement with the PATH Company to study the steps and potential impact of undertaking a retrofitting project.

These 3,000 bulbs are older bulbs that use more electricity and have a shorter life span compared to LED bulbs.

“For years, staff has kicked around kind of the idea of trying to do a retrofit project, but neither of the electric utilities were open to that concept, and since they own the lights they obviously have to be a willing partner in that,” Brentwood City Manager Kirk Bednar said in the meeting. “But recently there’s been some movement in the area in regards to the electric utilities who are more open to discussing this type of project.”

According to the online agenda, the city and the PATH Company will use information gathered from the City of Goodlettsville, who recently completed a retrofit project with Nashville Electric Service, and the Energy Services Company. 

“Using the Goodlettsville project as a model, staff began having conversations with the PATH Company, an Energy Services Company (ESCO), that coordinated the Goodlettsville project with NES and also has experience with several other streetlight retrofit projects across Tennessee and the entire TVA service area,” the agenda reads. 

According to the agenda, the PATH study will have the following goals.

  1. Utility Rate and Structure Negotiation

    1. Negotiate new LED rate changes on behalf of the City.

    2. Negotiate attachment fee with local utility provider (if applicable).

  2. Data aggregation

    1. PATH will utilize historical data (24-36 months) to accurately evaluate the current streetlight energy profile.

  3. Site Assessment

    1. Conduct a walk-thru of the City’s streetlights and interview the owner/operator, providing a summary of any problems or needs identified.

    2. Measure key operating parameters and compare to design levels, as necessary.

    3. Inventory all streetlights and record fixture specifications.

  4. Energy and Financial Analysis

    1. Estimate the approximate breakdown of energy use.

    2. Estimate the combined costs, savings and financial performance indicators from implementing the retrofit project.

NES and Middle Tennessee Electric both serve the City of Brentwood, and according to the city, the current annual expense for streetlight operations is just under $400,000.

While the project has a $50,000 price tag and was budgeted in the Capital Projects Fund, the city reports that if they decided to complete a retrofitting project with one or both utility providers, that cost would be rolled into the project’s overall contracted price.