Solar-powered streetlights OK’d by Pflugerville City Council

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A beautification measure approved by Pflugerville City Council at its March 26 meeting will put a touch of antique charm on a modern amenity in downtown.

The Pflugerville Downtown Association has gathered $20,000—with the Pflugerville Community Development Corp. contributing $30,000—to install solar-powered streetlights. In order to keep the downtown area’s vintage look, a special streetlight model referred to as the “Pflugerville” has been designed by Pvilion, a solar development company that designed a solar-powered car-charging station on SH 130. The council approved the installation and keeping the vintage aesthetics of the area.

“We wanted vintage streetlights just to help identify downtown as the downtown district,” Pflugerville Downtown Association President Rob Sides said. “We realized that Pflugerville has a green initiative citywide. … So we had [introduced]the idea of finding a vintage solar light, which we could not find. [Pvilion] decided to work with us and design a light that has solar capabilities as well.”

The lights will give off the amount of brightness required by the Texas Department of Transportation for street lamps. The lamps themselves will draw power from the city’s existing electricity infrastructure, and the solar panels on the lamps will feed power back into the city’s power grid.

“We were hoping to have the lights be 100 percent solar, but when we got the first lamps and did a test, it turned out they needed to be a little bit brighter, because Pecan Street is a Texas highway,” Sides said.

Currently, six to eight lamps are planned for construction along Pecan Street, but the PCDC is working on a $180,000 grant that would allow the installation of additional lights on Main and Railroad streets. If constructed, the lights along the two streets would be entirely solar-powered, because they are not Texas highways.

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