Public lighting has consistently been a problem in Highland Park for years. Struggles to keep the streetlights lit and paying the electric bill for those lights was followed by DTE Energy removing several hundred streetlights from the inner-city suburb last year. That problem gave birth to a new solution.
Highland Park, Mich. has a streetlight problem of staggering proportions, but it's an issue that a small group of citizens believe they can remedy. Faced with $58 million in municipal debt and a $60,000 monthly electric bill it could not pay last year, it decided to physically remove 1,000 of its 1,500 streetlights to help lower utility costs.