First LED traffic signal replacements underway since original upgrade in 2006

LED upgrades paid off faster than anticipated


Guelph, Ont., January 18, 2017—The City of Guelph is starting the first city-wide replacement of LED traffic signal bulbs since they were installed over 10 years ago. The City expected a four–year payback period from the LED traffic signal upgrades, but saw a much shorter, two–year payback period, and continues to see operational savings every year.

“The City has saved 90 per cent a year on energy costs for traffic signal operation since we replaced incandescent bulbs with LED lighting,” said Steve Anderson, Supervisor of Traffic Engineering with the City.

Previously, traffic signal bulbs had to be replaced twice a year. LED lights are generally maintenance free for 7-10 years, which reduces operational costs for bulbs and replacement work, and cuts down on the amount of waste produced.

“The original city-wide, traffic signal upgrade to LEDs is consistent with our Corporate Energy Program despite preceding it by several years,” said Alex Chapman, the City’s Corporate Energy Program manager “These upgraded traffic signals have provided inspiration elsewhere in the City, such as our current study of LED street lighting technology.”

Replacement work for 2017

The City has hired Reyner Electrical Construction Inc. to replace all LED lights at Guelph’s 188 signalized intersections. Only the red, yellow and green signal bulbs are being replaced; no changes are being made to the traffic signal structures or positions and there will be no noticeable change to traffic signals.

“We expect that Reyner will replace all 3,734 bulbs this year,” noted Anderson. “Replacement timing will depend on weather and contractor schedules.”

The total replacement project cost is about $162,000.

Minimal traffic impacts

The City does not expect traffic signal operation to be interrupted during signal bulb replacement work. There will be lane reductions at intersections where signal bulbs are being replaced to accommodate bucket trucks, but traffic flow will be maintained. Police traffic control assistance will be used as needed.

Signal bulb replacements at major Guelph intersections will be completed outside of peak traffic times such as morning and afternoon rush hours.

Pedestrian signals

“We’re not replacing pedestrian signals at this time, however, the City has received funding for this work and will begin retrofitting these signals to include countdown timers later this year,” explained Anderson.

For more information

Steve Anderson, Supervisor, Traffic Engineering
Engineering and Transportation Services, Transportation Services
519-822-1260 extension 2037