Streetlights Are Getting Cameras and Internet Connections under Newly Approved Intelligent Lamppost Project

We’ve been hearing about the amorphous idea of “smart cities” for a while, but trash cans, sidewalks, and stop signs still seem the same, right? As in the broader Internet of Things movement, though, some subtle creep is beginning, and street lights are the most recent target. 

In New York City, GE is working to get a pilot of its intelligent lamppost project approved. So far the company has tested the lights, which have LED bulbs on dimmers and include sensors and cameras, in San Diego, California, and Jacksonville, Florida. But putting them in New York would be a whole other experiment in terms of what they can do for ultra-high density urban issues like traffic and crowd movement.

DNA Info reports that GE is touting the potential energy savings of the dimmer bulbs as a major reason that the New York Department of Transportation should consider a pilot. “If you’re having a festival or an emergency you can make them really bright, or dim them down,” Jason Whittet, a director at GE’s Intelligent Cities program, said at a local Community Board meeting in Manhattan on Thursday.Read more