The “Forgotten Mile,” A Bit Brighter This Past Weekend

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If it looked a bit brighter on Coastal Highway between Rehoboth and Dewey this past weekend, it probably was. After this WGMD report two weeks ago concerning more than a dozen overhead street lamps that had gone dark, almost all have been repaired.

Since that report, Louise Holt, DelDOT spokeswoman, says that her agency has addressed multiple lights on the Coastal Highway corridor, including the set of three between where pedestrians were struck and killed on May 17 (Rehoboth Avenue-Extended) and August 11 (Church Street).

Holt said the street lamps on the side of the poles closer to Dewey are owned by the power company, not DelDOT. Timothy Stokes, Delmarva Power spokesman, said this past week that his company located 12 lights that were Delmarva Power lights in this area. Maintenance on these lights was completed this past week.

There has not been active lighting across the bridge over the Lewes-Rehoboth Canal, Holt pointed out. But three metal poles, each with two lamps, have been installed in the median as part of the ongoing bridge rehabilitation project. This is an especially dark section of the Forgotten Mile.

“Lighting [fixtures] on the approaches and across the bridge are being addressed as part of the bridge rehabilitation project,” she said. The project is targeted for completion by May, 2020. Important info regarding this project, including a bicycle detour, is covered in this DelDOT pamphlet.

Both DelDOT and Delmarva Power encourage people to report dark street lamps using either the DelDOT app or Delmarva Power app. Stokes notes that Delmarva Power street lights, unlike DelDOT’s, are labeled with a 10-digit coordinate number on the pole and often end with the letters DPL.

Delmarva Power, Stokes says, is installing intelligent street lamps in Wilmington with sensors that inform the utility if a lamp is in need of repair. “This is something we would definitely like to do more of with our city partners and Wilmington is our first attempt at using this smart-city technology,” he added.