Prairie Village City Council approves streetlight purchase

Prairie Village streelights will be converted to more energy efficient LED models in the coming years.
Prairie Village streelights will be converted to more energy efficient LED models in the coming years.

The Prairie Village City Council approved a $3.2 million plan to purchase and upgrade the city’s 2,062 streetlights Monday following several months of discussion.

The streetlights had been owned by Kansas City Power & Light and leased to the city at a cost of $760,000 annually. The decision to purchase them is expected to bring substantial savings to the city over the longterm.

The general obligation bond issued for the purchase will be repaid by the funds previously budgeted for leasing the streetlights.

The annual cost to maintain and repair the lighting system in the city would be just $270,000 per year — an annual savings of nearly half a million dollars over the current lease payment.

The $3.2 million budgeted for the acquisition includes $907,000 to convert the streetlights to energy-efficient LED fixtures.

Prairie Village is following the lead of neighboring cities like Overland Park, Leawood, Fairway, Mission and Mission Hills in making the switch from leasing to owning streetlights.

Northeast Johnson County cities have been negotiating streetlight purchases with KCP&L for a few years now. Mission began its process back in 2012.