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What is public lighting and why is it important?

It’s easy to take public lighting for granted. City dwellers are accustomed to streetlights and public safety after dark and probably don’t give it a second thought. Yet this basic service provided by municipal authorities is so important that it’s hard to imagine a city without public lighting.


Public lighting mostly refers to streetlights, which are available in a number of forms, from the most traditional - lamp posts and wall lights, for example – to cutting-edge, low visual impact units.


Here are a few reasons why public lighting infrastructure is important:

  • Enhanced road safety. Almost 50% of fatal car accidents happen at night, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Low visibility on dark streets is one of the causes. 
  • Reduced crime. Law enforcement officials and city governments have been studying the links between street lighting and crime for decades. Well-lit streets make people feel safer and are likely to deter crime. 
  • Increased productivity. Public lighting makes it easier for people to return to their homes from their workplace at any time of day or night, so they can work on a productivity-oriented schedule.
  • Sense of community. New lighting is an effective way for municipal governments to demonstrate their commitment to communities. Well-lit streets create a sense of pride and well being. 
  • Urban renewal. Modern redevelopment of different areas in a locality will always make them more attractive. For example, Enel X installed 628 new smart lighting points along a 14 kilometer bike path in São Paulo, Brazil as part of the Novo Rio Pinheiros redevelopment of an adjacent area aimed at encouraging people to use the river’s banks. In Romania, only in 2022, Enel X, through its e-City division, supplied and installed over 5.350 street and pedestrian lighting lamps with LED technology in Galati (Liberty Galati), Cluj-Napoca (Botanical Garden), as well as for the Domnești, Berceni and Olteniței overpasses on the Bucharest ring road or in localities in Alba, Arad, Bihor, Brasov, Caras-Severin, Cluj and Prahova counties. In total, public institutions and companies save more than 1.300 MWh annually with the help of smart street lighting solutions offered by Enel X Romania.

Today, local authorities therefore have a range of flexible and energy-efficient options for street lighting to improve safety and upgrade public spaces. Discover Enel X's innovative LED Maximo products, designed for high performance public lighting.