LEDing the way for an efficiently lit Nanaimo

BC Hydro crews will be updating streetlights in Nanaimo starting... now!


As a part of its province-wide streetlight upgrade plan, BC Hydro is working in Nanaimo to replace the old, inefficient high-pressure sodium (HPS) lights with newer light-emitting diodes (LED).

In Nanaimo, there are both City-owned and BC Hydro-owned streetlights, which are leased to the City of Nanaimo. The City began upgrading its lights to LED in 2018, while the majority of streetlights on BC Hydro poles remained the older HPS style. From August until the end of 2021, BC Hydro crews will be updating 4,276 streetlights within Nanaimo's neighbourhoods.

LED lighting comes in a variety of colour temperatures and brightnesses. BC Hydro will be working closely with the City to match the colour, brightness and spread of each current light, as well as to make adjustments that are appropriate in each neighbourhood location, considering both safety and the flooding of light towards homes.

For more information on BC Hydro's street light replacement program, visit www.bchydro.com. Questions for BC Hydro regarding the project can be sent to LightingSupport@bchydro.com.

Link to Strategic Plan: Supporting BC Hydro's LED upgrade initiative also supports Council's strategic plan, and to be an efficient and environmentally-responsible City.

Key Points

  • BC Hydro's LED street-lighting upgrades will take place from the beginning of August 2021 until the end of the year.
  • More than 4000 lights within Nanaimo's neighbourhoods will be upgraded during this project.


"The best LED lighting will really go unnoticed; not too bright, not too dark, not too warm and not too cool. If Goldilocks can walk our neighbourhood streets on a winter's evening and doesn't question the lighting, then along with BC Hydro, we got it right."

City of Nanaimo

"These new street lights will help improve public safety in the community by increasing the visibility of sidewalks and roads at night, as well as help reduce light pollution. LEDs also last longer and require less maintenance."

Program Manager, LED Street Lighting
BC Hydro

Quick Facts

  • The City of Nanaimo leases lights from BC Hydro for neighbourhoods that were originally designed without an expectation of modern street light design. Many of these neighbourhoods began as rural streets and grown and evolved to urban environments.
  • Leased lights are mounted on already existing BC Hydro power poles. The lease-light system does not meet current design standards, and does not in all cases provide even lighting along streets, but it does provide crucial light for neighbourhood safety where possible.
  • There are some LED lights that were upgraded and installed on BC Hydro poles prior to this project, and those lights will be reassessed before the project is complete at the end of the year.


For media enquiries, please contact
City of Nanaimo

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