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All Lit Up

Funchal City Council has completed the installation of new lighting in Rua João Tavira and Rua dos Tanoeiros, continuing its project to rejuvenate the city’s historic centre public spaces.  The project started at the end of last year, on Rua das Pretas, and is now focusing on less well-lit areas of Funchal’s Old Town such as Rua do Esmeraldo, Rua do Sabão and Rua Direita.

In response to concerns from traders about the poor lighting in some of the public spaces around them, which they felt, led to general feeling of discomfort and unease, the Municipal Department of Economy and Culture created a strategic plan as part of the Funchal Trade Revitalization Programme to install new LED lights around Funchal’s historic city centre, this they believe is a greener solution which will ensure greater efficiency and represent significant savings on the Municipality’s electricity bill.

With the new lights installed, the relevant departments have registered higher levels of satisfaction from traders who feel they have been listened to and who have in turn advised the municipality of the benefits of the new lighting, not only for themselves but also for residents and visitors to the area.

In a statement, the municipality has said that ‘the creation of better living conditions are essential aspects of sustainability, not only financially but environmentally as well.   Many European cities have switched to LED lights due to their energy efficiency, durability and safety.  And Funchal’s city council believe that by renewing downtown Funchal’s streetlights, the areas annual electricity consumption will drop by approximately 78 %, while the lights will pay for themselves over the next seven years.

The use of LED technology has been sympathetic and taken into account local historical heritage and street configuration to ensure that the Old Town’s unique atmosphere remains unaltered.

So far, the municipal has invested around €65,000 in the scheme, and plans to install approximately five hundred LED lights around the Old Town area.

Samantha Gannon

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