San Diego’s Historic Streetlights

by on October 31, 2023 · 2 comments

in History, Ocean Beach, San Diego


Picturesque historic streetlights have graced the streets and neighborhoods of San Diego for well over one hundred years, and now they are facing a dire and unnecessary threat of destruction.

Despite being structurally sound and possessing the potential to endure for another century with reasonable repairs and minimal restoration, these historic gems are in immediate and imminent danger due to the City of San Diego’s misguided and fiscally irresponsible plan to replace them with new fixtures.

This ill-conceived move not only dismisses the value of the existing infrastructure but also perpetuates a cycle of wastefulness and erasure of cultural heritage. This is being done against the community’s wishes. Urgent action is imperative to halt this unnecessary demolition and advocate for the preservation of these iconic streetlights.

These historic streetlights in San Diego hold intrinsic and irreplaceable value. They are silent witnesses to the city’s evolution, representing the craftsmanship and design ethos of their respective eras. These fixtures embody a tangible link to the past, enhancing the sense of place and identity for residents and visitors alike.

The City of San Diego’s decision to replace these historic streetlights with new fixtures is unwarranted and counterproductive. The existing streetlamp structures have shown their resilience over time and, with reasonable repairs and minimal restoration, can continue to serve the city for generations to come. The replacements are unwarranted and unwanted.

By callously and irreverently discarding these historical streetlights, the city is erasing a significant part of its cultural heritage. The removal of these fixtures undermines the sense of continuity and connection they provide to the community’s past.

The planned replacement of structurally sound streetlights amounts to a wasteful expenditure of resources, both in terms of financial costs and environmental impact. Demolishing functioning infrastructure contradicts sustainable practices and contributes to unnecessary landfill waste.

Call to Action Write your city council person and the mayor and tell them to stop the stupidity. Halting the replacement plan is not just a matter of practicality; it’s a commitment to honoring San Diego’s history and fostering a sustainable future. The time for action is now, before these invaluable pieces of the city’s heritage are lost forever.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Ron May October 31, 2023 at 7:30 pm

There is a lobby group of streetlight sales people that has been pressing the local electrical lighting districts for years and now has the ear of Mayor Todd Gloria to tear down all the historical light poles and replace those perfectly good light standards for modern Chinese junk. Any scam to make a buck and Mayor Todd Gloria falls for the lobbyists sales propaganda. Those lights have been operating fine for 80 to 100 years. The only thing that needs improvement is the electrical wiring and light bulbs, but that does not make the big bucks for the lobbyists. I feel the time is ripe to elect Kate Callen to protect our historical interests!


Gravitas November 1, 2023 at 6:27 am

More City “stupidity”. Cut down trees. Overbuild high-rise blocks in once craftsman neighborhoods…AND now remove classic street lights for what? Campaign donations?


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