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Vassar Street Light Project Includes Donation Of 21 Energy-Efficient Fixtures to the Town

Vassar College and the Town of Poughkeepsie have forged an agreement calling for the College to donate and install 21 energy-efficient LED street lights along Raymond Avenue.

The Town Board ratified the agreement November 18, and the lights are tentatively scheduled to be installed next month, said Bryan Swarthout, Vassar’s Vice President for Finance and Administration.

Vassar is paying $38,000 for the 21 street lights, located on Raymond Avenue between College and Fulton avenues, and the College. As part of the agreement, Vassar will also handle the installation, Swarthout said. The LED fixtures will save the town an estimated 7,000 kilowatt-hours per year in energy costs, equivalent to the average energy use of a Hudson Valley household.

“As a campus, we are committed to becoming carbon neutral by 30230,” said Micah Kenfield, Vassar’s Director of Sustainability. “Part of that commitment is replacing light fixtures throughout the campus. While these 21 fixtures on Raymond Avenue weren’t part of our original scope of work, we thought it made sense to add this incremental expense to the project to support the town’s own sustainability effort and create more beneficial lighting to the Vassar community as well as the greater Poughkeepsie community that frequents Raymond Avenue.”

The installation of the light fixtures marks the final component of a plan to replace205 light fixtures on the Vassar campus including street lights owned by the College on the Vassar side of Raymond Avenue, Swarthout explained.

“We collaborate with the Arlington Business Improvement District on energy saving measures and we’re thrilled this project also could allow us to share expertise with the town,” he said. “These energy-efficient lights will not only save town taxpayers money but will create much better visibility compared to the incandescent lights we are replacing. The project fits the goals of the College and the Arlington Business Improvement District to create a more walkable community.”

Town of Poughkeepsie Supervisor Jon J. Baisley thanked Vassar for its donation on behalf of all town residents. “These lights will help in reducing our carbon footprint and are ‘dark-sky’ approved,’ the supervisor said. “This demonstrates Vassar’s strong commitment to assisting our community in making the town a better place to live, work and play.”

Contact: Larry Hertz,, 845-518-3098 (Vassar College)

Posted by Office of Communications Friday, November 20, 2020