Glasgow cyclists to get ‘smart’ streetlighting

Glasgow is to trial a ‘smart’ lighting system for cycle routes, with LED lights dimming down when not in use and brightening up when a cyclist approaches.

The pilot project, made possible by funding from the government's Technology Strategy Board, will explore the use of LED streetlights and sensors on an off-road stretch of the city's cycle routes which is currently unlit. The new lights will operate at 40 per cent brightness, rising to 100 per cent when they sense movement nearby.

Glasgow City Council told Lux the plans form part of a series of smart streetlighting projects that are currently in their early stages. Sensors are to be installed on lighting columns around the city which will collect data on footfall, as well as air and noise pollution levels.

The smart lights will be programmed to react by increasing in brightness if a disturbance is indicated by a rise in noise level. The lighting sensor that detected the incident will be programmed to flash, to help direct emergency services to incident locations.

The technologies are being developed by the council as part of the Future Cities initiative, which aims to test future technology solutions in the city and share findings with cities around the world. Glasgow beat 30 other cities including Birmingham, Bristol and London to £24 million funding to host the ‘Future Cities Demonstrator’.

Minister for universities and science David Willetts said: ‘We are in a global race and Glasgow can keep the UK at the forefront of innovative technology ideas. From transport systems to energy use and health, this demonstrator will play a key part in the government’s industrial strategy and give real insight into how our cities can be shaped in the future.’

Comments 1

Great article! Since it was wrote Glasgow has been given the go ahead to convert 10,000 of its street lights to the brighter more energy efficient LED lights. With the UK spending just over £300 million a year on lighting public areas, we could benefit greatly from other cities following Glasgow's lead.

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