AS A certified lighting designer for over 20 years, I would like to respond to the July 4 article on concerns about new LED streetlights in Boston (“Bright words, glaring worries over city’s new streetlights,” Page A1).
LED technology is the most energy efficient light source, and the fixtures last years, leading to huge maintenance cost reduction.
LEDs can also provide better-quality light, and the psychological effect of quality lighting in urban areas is significant. Better lighting leads to less crime, fewer accidents, and an overall sense of well being.
In contrast, other light sources can turn color over time. The horrendous yellow of low pressure sodium lights says, “watch out.”
We see bad lighting everywhere: light poles with bright glaring glass that don’t light walking areas well; overly lit gas stations; burned out light bulbs that create unpredictable dark and bright areas; poor color rendering that makes environmental recognition difficult, to name a few.
LEDs will provide consistent lighting for a very long time. Selecting the right fixtures that allow light patterns to be controlled is extremely important. Will someone end up with light coming through their window? If you live in the city, that might just happen. But that’s not a LED lighting issue.