Visalia works to light up downtown for holidays

Overhead wiring this week is temporary fix for street lighting on Acequia, Court and Bridge streets

@TheSunGazette

VISALIA – Just a day after daylight savings and just weeks before seasonal festivities begin, the city began work to ensure that downtown is well lit for the holidays.

On Monday, Nov. 5, work began to install overhead wiring on some downtown street lights in an effort to keep the roadways illuminated on Acequia, Court and Bridge streets.

“This is a temporary measure to ensure downtown lighting while our Community Development staff continues to work on a new design for the entire downtown street light systems,” shares Norm Goldstrom, public works manager, City of Visalia. “The City Council has directed staff to move forward on the Downtown Street Light Project, and this is a small step in the overall process.”

Working on behalf of the City, contractor AC Electric will install wiring on downtown on Acequia, Court and Bridge Streets. Once the wiring is installed, City staff will modify the existing fixtures to light the streets.

“These modifications are an important piece of the overall project as they allow us to bring back lighting to these portions of downtown,” added Goldstrom. “This fix, along with future modifications, will carry us through until we begin the complete replacement of the outdated and failing 4KV street light system to the new 240 volt street light circuit.”

Crews began hanging wire on poles down Bridge Street yesterday, Nov. 6 and continued today, Nov. 7 on Acequia Avenue between Bridge and Church Streets. On Nov. 8 work will be done on Acequia from Church Street to Court Street. Friday, Nov. 9, crews will hang wire along Court Street. The wiring work will not significantly impact traffic and all streets will be open as the project is completed.

A 2006 study of downtown discovered that the lighting system was installed in the 1930s, requires 4,000 to 5,000 volts to operate, and includes approximately 225 lights. In May, the city council allocated $5.5 million of Measure N funding over the next two years to design and replace the lighting system on Center, Main and Acequia between Conyer and Burke.

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