SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Crews working on the street light project in a Hidden Valley neighborhood is bringing relief to the residents.
Joyce, a woman who lives in the neighborhood, alerted NewsChannel 3 about the street light outage two weeks ago. She asked us to conceal her address and last name.
"That was in the middle of April. Nothing has happened. Either the city doesn't want to pay the contractor or the contractor doesn't want to do the work. I don't know. None of us know," said Joyce.
On Monday, an alert was sent out residents in the area who have access to NextDoor.com and the mobile app version about the project set to begin on Wednesday.
"About time! Six months is a long time to be without any street lights without any lighting at night at all. There has been catalytic converters stolen off of vehicles right under the streetlights that wasn't working," said Joyce.
Crews from Imperial Electric Company based in Goleta began the project by removing more than 200 feet of wiring underneath a street light. They have many more lights to work on.
In an email from Jim Dewey, the facilities and energy manager of the Santa Barbara Public Works Department, he states:
"The City of Santa Barbara has been working to repair the catastrophic failure of the old high-voltage street lighting system in Hidden Valley since May. We have held a community meeting to discuss the issue, and have been and are actively communicating and providing updates to the community through NextDoor.com. We chose NextDoor.com because it verifies that only residents can receive the information, so that we can ensure the security inside the neighborhood, and make sure that people don't need to know, don't know about this issue."
However, Joyce and many of the residents are older and don't know how to use cellphones or the internet. She says she has never received a letter talking about the outage and project.
"We will be converting the lighting system to high-efficiency 3000K LED lighting using standard voltages. The street lighting system will be a big improvement over what was there when it was working. The project will take about 12 weeks to complete," said Dewey.
He goes on to say, "Police patrols have also been increased in the area. We will continue to update the neighborhood through NextDoor.com.
Residents are encouraged to register with the service to receive regular updates.