In the past three months, the main streets and thoroughfares of Cebu City have become more runner-friendly, even at night and early dawn, thanks to the city’s P15-million street lighting project.
In case you haven’t noticed, the 250-watt yellow sodium lamps have given way to the much brighter metal halide white lamps. The new brightness of the city’s streets is hard to describe, maybe because in all of my 25 years of being a Cebu City resident, I’ve never seen this much illumination on the city’s streets. So you have to step out at night or at 4AM to appreciate the full impact of the new lamps.
This china-made lamp has the same wattage as the yellow sodium lamps, but is much cheaper at P4,475 per set and more efficient as it can illuminate even the sidewalk from across the other side of the street lane or road. By comparison, the old yellow sodium lamps cost the city P7,000 per set, but does not illuminate a runner’s path as efficiently. The new lamps are maintenance-free and can last between 6 to 8 years. Its switch-free photo-control feature ensures that the lamps automatically turns on and off according to prevailing lighting condition.
Engr. Joel Biton of the Cebu City Street Lighting Division reveals that the new streetlamps will be put in the city’s major thoroughfares including among others – Osmena Boulevard, Gen. Maxilom Avenue, R. Duterte St. to Labangon, the whole stretch of Natalio Bacalso Avenue and M.J. Cuenco, the streets near the city’s port area, Banilad to Talamban, Gorordo Avenue, Salinas Drive, Nivel Hills all the way to the Busay-Malubog border.
After regularly running alone on city streets at 4AM for three years now, I’ve had many encounters with perverts, flashers, thieves and gangs lurking in dark street corners waiting to prey on runners and pedestrians.
Bright lights, by itself, cannot totally eliminate crimes committed in the dark and other vexations of city living, but they sure make the city streets a much safer place for motorists, pedestrians and runners. For the first time, in a really long while, I feel like my taxes are working for lowly runners like me.