A state-issued energy grant will make several city street signals easier to see, according to a statement released Monday by the City of Miami and Miami Main Street.

The $22,500 grant will be used to relamp 19 traffic lights at intersections where incandescent bulbs currently illuminate the signals. They will be replaced with energy efficient light emitting diodes, according to city administrators.

The LEDs have low power consumption and long life expectancy - as high as 10 years - city officials stated in Monday's release.

“Motorists should notice that the LEDs are brighter than the current incandescent bulbs currently in place in city traffic lights, said Miami City Manager Michael Spurgeon.

“In Miami, the estimated yearly energy savings from the LED system is estimated to be approximately $6,100. Based upon those savings alone, in less than four years, the conversion to LEDs will pay for itself in energy savings, Spurgeon said. “Additionally, it is estimated that relamping the traffic lights with LEDs will save the city nearly $2,100 annually in manpower which is needed to constantly replace burnt incandescent bulbs in traffic signals.

The city will match the grant with $9,123 in donated labor and equipment charges. All work is projected to be completed by late summer 2008.

“We have a responsibility to our ratepayers to find ways to reduce energy costs and at the same time improve public safety, Spurgeon said. “The Community Energy Efficient Lighting Application Program affords us this unique opportunity. I applaud the efforts of city staff and Main Street for seeking ways to save public dollars and improve safety.

According to Utility Superintendent/City Engineer Jerry Ruse, “The project will help to update three traffic intersections on Main Street that have historic hanging swag street signals.

“Saving the historic traffic lights will enhance the city's $1,800,000 downtown streetscape project currently being financed by two grants from the Oklahoma Department of Transportation-Transportation Enhancement Program, he said.

Funding for the LED project was awarded to the city through a Community Energy Efficient Lighting Grant, issued through the Oklahoma Department of Commerce-State Energy Office.

The grant application was prepared by the city's department of community and economic development department.