Traffic Light Project Using Esri's ArcGIS Saves Philadelphia $1 Million per Year

Additional Savings Realized from Interdepartmental Data Sharing

Redlands, California—December 02, 2010—The City of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is using Esri's ArcGIS software system to implement its LED Traffic Lights Project, an ambitious traffic light replacement program funded in part by an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 grant. With ArcGIS, the city's Department of Streets will track and manage the project, which will result in replacing 87,000 incandescent lightbulbs with energy-saving light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs. Estimated operational savings resulting from significantly lower use of electricity, the greater longevity of LED bulbs, and the fixed department costs to replace bulbs are expected to top $1 million per year.

In addition to saving money and field personnel time, Philadelphia's enterprise implementation of the system provides data access to other departments within the city, resulting in a significant return on investment.

"The opportunity to capture the asset data for the light replacement project and use it for other applications within the Department of Streets and share it with other departments saves the city a considerable amount of time and money," says Andy Mehos, GIS manager for the Department of Streets. "It is significant enough to offset any cost of software development and the purchase of equipment. After observing our success in implementing this project, other city departments are considering similar GIS [geographic information system] projects of their own."

The department employed a consultant to develop a customized GIS application integrated with ArcGIS that supplies a spatially enabled mobile solution for tracking street-related city assets. The application's bar code scanning capability provides a quick way to add an LED bulb record to the geodatabase while in the field. In addition to LED bulbs, the department is capturing asset data about traffic heads, traffic control boxes, and light and sign pole attachments with the application.

A video about Philadelphia's light replacement program, The Recovery Act Is "Lighting Up" the Streets of Philadelphia, can be seen at .

For more information about Esri's public works solutions, visit

About Esri

Since 1969, Esri has been giving customers around the world the power to think and plan geographically. The market leader in GIS technology, Esri software is used in more than 300,000 organizations worldwide including each of the 200 largest cities in the United States, most national governments, more than two-thirds of Fortune 500 companies, and more than 7,000 colleges and universities. Esri applications, running on more than one million desktops and thousands of Web and enterprise servers, provide the backbone for the world's mapping and spatial analysis. Esri is the only vendor that provides complete technical solutions for desktop, mobile, server, and Internet platforms. Visit us at


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