Street Light Policy


Article I.  Purpose and Goal 

The purpose of this policy is to establish the procedures the City will use to manage the installation, modification, maintenance, replacement, and removal of street lights.

The goal of this policy is to provide for public safety on City streets and City-owned property, and to prioritize the City resources necessary to manage the street light utility.


Article II.  Applicable Street Lighting 

This policy applies to all public lights installed on public right-of-way within City limits and on all City-owned property as deemed appropriate and necessary. Throughout this policy, the term “street light” shall be interpreted as “a light placed on public right-of-way or City-owned property to provide illumination of the street and/or property” but, in general, shall not include traffic signals and other light sources along a public roadway. 


Article III.  Resource Materials

This policy has been developed pursuant to Chapter 12 of the City of Moorhead Charter which directs Moorhead Public Service to locate public lights as directed by the City Council and the Street Light Service Agreement between the City of Moorhead and Moorhead Public Service executed on December 22, 2014.

The City, in consultation with Moorhead Public Service, has developed technical standards and specifications (Street Light Standards) for street light installation to support implementation of this policy. The Street Light Standards establish criteria for effective illumination with consideration given to street classification, property zoning, uniformity and efficiency, standard lighting fixtures, cost allocation, and/or cost-sharing for enhancements beyond the minimum standards and specifications. The Street Light Standards document will be maintained by the City of Moorhead, in consultation with Moorhead Public Service, through a Street Light Technical Committee.


Article IV. Installation 

All streets within the City of Moorhead shall have street lighting installed in accordance with this policy and supporting Street Light Standards. Lighting shall also be installed on other City-owned property as deemed appropriate and necessary.

The location, fixture type, and related criteria set forth in the Street Light Standards will govern street light installation. These standards will be periodically reviewed and revised in response to changes in industry illumination standards, fixture availability, cost, etc.  Proposed installations will be reviewed by the Street Light Technical Committee as necessary and/or appropriate.

Street light installations will be completed in accordance with the Street Light Standards in effect at the time of installation. Previous installations will not be modified solely in response to a subsequent change in the Street Light Standards. However, the Street Light Technical Committee may initiate reviews of existing installations as deemed appropriate and public requests for modification will be considered as outlined in Article V.


Article V. Modification to Existing Street lights 

The public may request changes to street lighting. In order to document and track public requests, and avoid duplication of effort for repeat requests, the City has established an on-line request form. All requests for changes to street lighting must be submitted using this on-line form. City staff will provide assistance for any member of the public that requests or requires assistance in completing the form.

The installation and/or modification of street lights in response to public requests will be conducted in accordance with the procedure outlined below.

  1. In response to a request, City staff will forward a petition form to the requestor. The petition must be completed and submitted to advance the request for further consideration.
  • The petition form is intended to provide evidence of general support for the change and minimize the expenditure of City and Moorhead Public Service resources on requests that are not widely supported.
  • Petitions must be signed by at least 60% of the property owners of record in the affected area, including property owners on both sides of the street.The affected area, and therefore, petition respondents will generally be determined as follows:

a.  The location of any proposed new street light will be on a property line as close as practical to one-half the distance between existing street light(s).

b.  Petition respondents will be the owners of properties located within an area that encompasses one-half the distance between the proposed new street light and existing street light locations on either side of the proposed new street light.

c.  The petition area will be defined by the Street Light Technical Committee.

2.  The Street Light Technical Committee will review the petitioned request for consistency with the Street  Light Standards and/or as needed to address reasonable public safety concerns. The Street Light Technical Committee will recommend installation and/or modification if appropriate, or will deny the request if inconsistent with this policy.

3.  The Street Light Technical Committee recommendation will be forwarded to the petitioners

4.  The City Engineer will approve and forward the final recommendation to the Moorhead Public Service Electric Division Manager for implementation, if appropriate.


Article VI. Street Light Technical Committee 

A Street Light Technical Committee comprised of City staff members from the Engineering Department, Public Works Department, and Police Department and Moorhead Public Service staff members from the Electric Division will jointly implement or make recommendations necessary to implement the Street Light Service Agreement, periodically review and recommend revisions to this policy, periodically review and revise the Street Light Standards, review street light installations associated with new development or redevelopment, and review public requests for installation and/or modification of street lights.


Article VII.  Modification and Deviation from Policy 

The City reserves the right to modify this policy at any time if deemed to be in the best interest of the City based on safety, social, political, and economic considerations.

The City Engineer and/or Moorhead Public Service Electric Division Manager, or his/her designee, may authorize a deviation from the implementation of this policy with respect to a particular street light (or street lights) when deemed to be in the best interest of the City based on safety, social, political, and economic considerations. Such deviation shall be documented and include information supporting the deviation.

Property owners may also request that deviations from this policy be presented to the City Council for consideration.


Street Light Request Form