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Old Posted Nov 27, 2009, 4:52 PM
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VivaLFuego VivaLFuego is offline
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Originally Posted by Atlantan26 View Post
I wonder why some large cities have taken an aggressive approach to lighting roadways and others havent? Is it for crime purposes or other reasons?
My take (opinion-based):

Crime is a biggy. Major urban streetlighting projects were undertaken in the 1950s and 1960s. Big cities that had street crime issues affecting citizens/voters of all income strata at this time (New York, Chicago, Detroit, and much of LA certainly qualify) went to very great lengths on brightly lighting all their streets.

In the newer (post-1960s), more 'suburban' cities where urban growth has been driven by middle and upper class auto-oriented development, there simply wasn't the same political imperative to install such street-lighting systems.

If not for the potential for street crime, most locales would really rather not install such massive amounts of lighting in all locations, for both aesthetic reasons (lighting up the night sky with the orange of high-pressure sodium flouresecent) and cost reasons (powering and maintaining the lights). Hence, in places where ubiquitous lighting isn't demanded because no one is ever on sidewalks anyway, streetlighting is minimal except at places where it's needed for auto safety, such as busy intersections and interchanges.
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