Residents in Surbiton have helped choose a replacement design for street lights through a public vote and consultation.
The council claim the refurbishment, which has a budget of £290,000, is necessary as the lamp columns are past their useful life and need replacing.
The recommended design, the ‘Legend’ got 46 per cent of the vote, narrowly beating the ‘Albany’ design with 43 per cent. A total of 552 votes were placed.
Residents had the opportunity to view the proposed designs when they were launched at the Surbiton Festival on 29th September up until the close of the display on the 5th November. A two-week exhibition took place in Surbiton Library and 1700 leaflets were dropped to local businesses and residents. An online vote and survey was also available via the council’s website.
The Member Officer Working Group (MOG) met on the 8th November to discuss the results of the public consultation. It concluded that the town centre should have a modern design and it was recommended to this committee that the ‘Legend’ design should be chosen. This design features a straight sided column and a bracket with a support.
Councillor Karen George, however, stated at the meeting that she does not agree with the decision to recommend the Legend system as she belives the original lighting system should be retained in Surbiton Town Centre.
Praise for this design was put forward alongside the opportunity to vote. One enthusiast wrote: “The Legend option combines traditional design with modern technology. It would give Surbiton an original feel!”
Several residents were critical about the “limited choice” offered. One resident asked: “Was this the best the Council could come up with?”
The survey also gave an indication of voter’s main reasons for visiting Surbiton. It showed that 298 people out of the 552 votes which were placed come to Surbiton to shop, while 257 come for the train station and 233 come for food and drink.
The MOG will submit its recommendations as a report to Surbiton Neighbourhood Committee on 23rd January 2013. This will enable Cartledge, the UK’s third largest street lighting contractor, to complete the design of the scheme and provide detailed costs.