The long-awaited LED shimmers are now up and operational in Central Park.
The LED have been placed around 27 trees in that downtown location near the library. The lights are designed to turn on automatically at dusk and off when the sun comes up in the morning.
The project had been included in downtown revitalization efforts, and was discussed during budget deliberations as part of the capital budget. The project was budgeted at $35,000 and was seen as a relatively inexpensive way to revitalize the downtown and also promote community safety.
The lights also open up the possibility that the Central Park location, which has seen regular daytime events such as the Live@Lunch series, could hold some potential events in the nighttime hours as well.
“These lights would create a new atmosphere in the park (and) open it up to more evening rentals,” said Director of Planning and Development Jennifer Niesink in December during budget deliberations.
“As well, it’s always a safety feature to have more lighting in areas which get a little bit dark.”
According to the City’s news release, the project used Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design principles. The lights were installed not only to beautify the area, but to improve lighting for legitimate park users at night. The thinking is that the lighting will deter criminals, and also reduce accidents and injuries at the location.
The contract to put in the lights was awarded to L7 Electric and it was completed this year.
The lights are the final act in efforts to restore the Central Park location. Other improvements and renovations done at the location include removal of the water fountain (which had been in disrepair) as well as adding new benches and a giant sun dial. Local resident Natalya Shevchuk also spearheaded the installation of a “Blessing Box” at the park as well, where household items can be left for those in need.