What Happens When a City Turns Out the Lights?

Strapped for cash, cities across the US have decided to save money by turning off street lights. An investigative series documents the effect of all those darkened lights on crime and economic development in San Diego - home to a $30 million backlog.
August 1, 2013, 11am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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"Street lights aren’t just lights," writes Stan Alcorn. "They’re supposed not only to reveal the potholes and parking meters that would otherwise be in the dark, but also to change what’s there. Specifically, they’re supposed to reduce crime."

An investigative series in the Voice of San Diego, examines "the relationship between street lights and crime and economic development and why they exist or don’t in certain neighborhoods.”

"As a first step they’ve taken a few stories of San Diegans in the dark," says Alcorn. "From this anecdotal sample, what happens is a mix of falls, scares and actual crime."

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Published on Wednesday, July 31, 2013 in Fast Company Co.Exist
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