Johnson City Smart Poles

Johnson City Smart Poles

This pilot project will evaluate the combination of smart lighting and sensor technologies to support business case development for smart poles that enhance energy savings, public safety, park management, community experience and satisfaction and maintenance reduction.

Download the project snapshot

 

Background

While there are many instances of smart lighting pilot projects across the country, this pilot project focuses on the value and savings of a combination of smart sensor technologies, their applications in different scenarios, and how a community can generate positive outcomes by leveraging technology and data. Smart pole technologies offer new opportunities for expanded city services and more data streams while also improving the experience for city or town residents.

In addition to smart lighting, smart poles offer a wide variety of benefits to the town, the local power company, and all residents. Features of smart poles include: environmental sensors, such as flooding sensors; insights into energy usage of the poles; loudspeakers for music or emergency announcements; pedestrian count sensors, visual alarms; and other options. This pilot project is the first phase in a series to expand smart pole deployment and use in Johnson City, Tennessee. By taking a multiphase approach, the pilot project team will be able to integrate lessons learned into future smart pole installations.

 

Johnson City Smart Pole Illustration

Overview

BrightRidge, the city of Johnson City, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) are partnering to retrofit and supply new smart poles with LED lighting controls, 4-color LED lights and multiple smart sensors in downtown Founders Park and King Commons Park playground.

Founders Park scope of work will include:

  1. Retrofitted and new smart poles.
  2. LED lighting controls (e.g., synchronized, dimmable and mobile/cloud-based lighting controls).
  3. Four-color LED lighting for seasonal decoration or visible warnings.
  4. Audio speakers for broadcasting safety messages and music.
  5. Pedestrian counters to measure park use times and seasonality.
  6. Weather station to measure temperature and barometric pressure.
  7. Water level monitor tied into an audio/visual alarm for creek level rise.

King Commons playground scope of work will include:

  1. Retrofitted new smart poles.
  2. LED lighting controls (e.g., synchronized, dimmable and mobile/cloud-based lighting controls).
  3. Four-color LED lighting for seasonal decoration or visible warnings.
  4. Audio speakers for broadcasting safety messages and music.

Little boy playing in a park at Johnson City

Objectives

Pilot Illustration

Success for this pilot project will be measured by the following:

  1. Energy savings at the smart pole locations.
  2. Data analytics provided by the smart poles.
  3. Increased use of parks due to smart pole presence.
  4. Enhanced knowledge of the benefits of smart poles.

By tracking this information, the pilot project team will learn more about the energy savings potential of smart poles as well as how the data collected from the smart poles can provide valuable insights into their effectiveness, applicability, and scalability across the Valley.

Key Levers for Success

This pilot project is truly a team effort. Close collaboration of the different partners – Johnson City, BrightRidge, EPRI and TVA – allows each partner to provide valuable insight and expertise, including:

  • Johnson City – provide the locations for the smart poles.
  • BrightRidge – enable energy and cost-savings estimates and funding.
  • EPRI – provide research and analytics of the various aspects of the smart poles.
  • TVA – provide guidance and funding for the project.

The various partnerships for a pilot project with a technology focus like this one help ensure the project objectives can be met within the established timeframe.

The Team

Cathy Ball, City Manager, Johnson City
Phil Pindzola, Public Works Director, Johnson City
Jeff Dykes, CEO of BrightRidge
Mark Eades, BrightRidge
Mike Stovall, BrightRidge
Frank Sharp, Principal Technical Lead, EPRI
Doug Lindsey, Technical Lead, EPRI

Georgia Caruthers, Senior Program Manager, TVA

Next Steps / Timeline

TVA Connected Communities Calendar Icon

Measurement and verification done by EPRI will be conducted over 2023 and 2024 to gather more information and impact from the smart poles.