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Vaughan earns award for using AI to reduce salt use on roads, retrofitting 24,000 LED streetlights

30% reduction in salt and LED can save up to $1M in energy costs
Oct. 4, 2021
Dina Al-Shibeeb

Vaughan has received an award for installing more LED lights and using AI technology to reduce the amount of salt splashed each winter.

Both of these additions are deemed far more sustainable, environmentally friendly and savvy ways to cut down costs.

"I am pleased to announce the City of Vaughan is a two-time recipient of the 2021 Smart 50 Awards for the Winter Maintenance Artificial Intelligence System and the LED Streetlight Retrofit Program,” Vaughan Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua said in late September.

“The Smart 50 Awards were created in partnership with Smart Cities Connect, Smart Cities Connect Foundation and US Ignite to honour the 50 most innovative and transformative municipal-scale Smart Cities projects globally,” he added.

Vaughan has adopted the innovative AI technology in 2018 to reduce the amount of salt used in winter time. Ever since it has cut down the salt by 30 per cent each winter and saved about $400,000 in favour of better salt management.

Vaughan has also installed more than 24,000 new “more sustainable” LED lights, which use 50 per cent less energy than the previous bulbs and have a lifespan of about four times longer, representing about 20 per cent of the city's overall energy consumption.

“This translates into ongoing savings in operating and maintenance costs, and as a result of the reduction in energy consumption, the city will save approximately $1 million each year,” the mayor added.

“The new LED lights are also more reliable, will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve roadway safety for pedestrians and drivers, as they radiate a more bright, white light.”

For the LED, its phase 2 is currently underway, which will see more of these lights installed.