A solar-powered streetlight has debuted in the “Presidents’ Row” neighborhood of Venice, and the power of daylight sunshine is now stored to illuminate residential Victoria Avenue long after the sun has set. Calling this the first use of solar power for a residential streetlight in Los Angeles, Harris Levy of the Presidents’ Row Neighborhood Association tells the story of a grassroots movement to brighten the streets.
About four years ago, residents of the area – west of Lincoln Boulevard between Venice and Washington boulevards, and called Presidents’ Row because of Garfield, Van Buren, Harding, etc. avenues – decided to take some action to brighten the neighborhood’s dark streets. Levy, Lindsey Folsom and others investigated solar lighting and solar providers and began conversations with then-councilmember Cindy Miscikowski and with the Los Angeles Bureau of Street Lighting.
As a result of these efforts, Miscikowski arranged to fund a pilot project for solar street lighting, and monies were transferred to the Bureau for disbursement according to the needs of Presidents’ Row. Both the neighborhood association and the Bureau researched solar lighting providers. The association settled on Solar Outdoor Lighting, Inc. (appropriately “SOL”) because of its track record and reputation for excellent customer service, and that company provided the Victoria Avenue light, which the neighborhood has christened “Plexus” according to Levy.
Another solar streetlight supplied by the provider identified by the Bureau of Street Lighting will soon debut on Coeur D’Alene Avenue.