MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Touting cost savings and safety improvements, the Minnesota Department of Transportation says it is converting roadway lighting to LED.

According to MnDOT, the statewide project involves converting more than 28,500 roadway lights, which are currently high-pressure sodium lights.

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The conversion means replacing the light fixtures and bulbs.

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“Drivers will see whiter light, but the biggest impacts will be a large reduction in the energy bill and eliminating the cost of bulb replacement every four years,” Michael Gerbensky, signal design and lighting management engineer for MnDOT’s Twin Cities’ Metro area, said. “This means having our maintenance personnel out on the roadway less often, which reduces traffic control costs and it means improved safety. That savings can go to preserving our roadways.”

MnDOT expects energy cost savings to be up to $1.45 million a year with an additional $500,000 per year savings in maintenance and replacement costs for light fixtures and bulbs.

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The entire conversion is expected to be completed by 2020.