When a Northwestern student safety committee raised concerns about the lack of street lighting in a particular area on the south edge of campus, the University found an opportunity to work with the City of Evanston to create a solution.
In exchange for approving the addition of 16 new lights on the lakefront blocks of 1700 Judson Avenue and 1800 Sheridan Road, Northwestern arranged for the design, purchase and installation of the Tallmadge-style fixtures. Northwestern will officially donate the lights, which meet the City’s standards for historic style, height and illumination, to Evanston as a gift. The City has agreed to pay for future maintenance.
“We had lengthy negotiations with the City, including the historic preservation commission, to determine the best location and fixture appropriate for the pedestrian scale of this particular neighborhood,” said Andrew McGonigle, manager of construction projects for Northwestern’s Facilities Management office. “In working together, we were able to use a long-lasting 85-watt bulb that the City already uses in other light fixtures.”
The new fixtures stand 12 feet tall — four feet shorter than the City’s traditional fixture — in order to cast ample light onto the sidewalks and street without illuminating yards and homes.
In addition, two standard city lights have been placed on Clark Street outside the Northwestern alumni center, and one light has been added outside the University building at 405 Church Street.
This project is part of Northwestern’s ongoing effort to improve campus safety. During the past few years, the University has added sidewalk light poles along the east side of Sheridan Road and “blue light” emergency phones in strategic campus spots. Additionally, it made a contribution of $700,000 to the City of Evanston to support the installation of new street lights in the area between Emerson Street on the south, Sheridan Road on the east, Central Street on the north and Ridge Avenue on the west.
“Improved lighting on campus and in the adjacent neighborhood has been and will continue to be a priority for the University,” said Eugene S. Sunshine, senior vice president for business and finance.