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£440M PFI deals for street lighting

Local authorities will soon be able to bid for £440M in funding aimed at modernising street lighting, despite previous deals causing shortfalls in the numbers of lamp columns available.

Transport minister Sadiq Khan said that local authorities across England will be able to apply for the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) credits to improve lighting on their local roads.

He said: “Good quality street lighting improves road safety and reduces crime and the fear of crime. This funding will help to create safer and healthier local communities by promoting social inclusion and more sustainable patterns of transport such as cycling and walking.”

This is the third bidding round for street lighting credits in England, with 19 lighting projects already up and running around the country.

About 10 projects from the last bidding round in 2005 are currently in procurement, having been endorsed by the Project Review Group.

PFI credits are paid as a special grant and calculated according to a formula set out in the Special Grant Report. Revenue Support starts in the first year in which the authority payments under the contract are made.

Readers' comments (1)

  • The downturn in the private developer's demand for lighting columns makes concerns about supply capacity a non-issue. There has not been a shortage of supply since the credit crunch kicked in for this reason. However, PFI funding is not the solution but additional funds are required to replace existing lighting stock at a sustainable demand level. Get back to properly funded local authority lighting budgets.

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