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Elizabeth Pagano is the editor of the Austin Monitor.
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Energy-efficient party at the moontower!
Wednesday, August 31, 2016 by Elizabeth Pagano
All right, all right, all right! Yesterday, Austin Energy announced that the once-busted Zilker moonlight tower will be restored to service, now with energy-efficient LED lights. The tower is one of 17 remaining towers of the 31 original towers built in 1895. In addition to getting new lights, it has been restored, repaired, repainted and reassembled. According to the press release from the city, “As part of the restoration process, all 17 moonlight towers will be outfitted with LED light bulbs, saving approximately 131,400 kilowatt-hours annually, which is the equivalent of powering 11 average-sized homes year-round.” The press release from the utility took the opportunity to tout the urban lighting system’s unique nature: “No other city in the world still has moonlight towers. They’re historical treasures that Austin Energy is committed to maintaining. We are also committed to reducing energy consumption and worked with the Texas Historical Commission to carefully choose LED light bulbs that preserve both the color and intensity of the original lighting,” said Dan Smith, vice president of electric service delivery. According to Wikipedia, of the original towers, two have been destroyed in traffic accidents and two others by cyclones, and six succumbed to the twin demons of rust and old age.
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