Let there be light!
Brighton Beach’s unlit streetlight saga came to a happy conclusion last Wednesday evening — thanks to Courier Life Publications and BrooklynDaily.com — as the city and Con Edison finally got together to turn on a light that had left the neighborhood in the dark for months.
The utility and Department of Transportation had been quibbling over who was responsible for fixing the broken street light at the corner of Brighton Third Street and Brighton Second Lane, and residents cheered when the light finally lit up on Aug. 17 — a few hours after the story about the dark corner of our borough appeared on BrooklynDaily.com.
“We were very happy to see the light on,” Brighton Beach resident Judd Fischler, who had been trying to get the light fixed since the beginning of the year, told us. “With your paper’s efforts, we got this thing done pretty fast and now everyone is seeing the light.”
Fischler said the streetlight started flickering last year and completely died this past January.
After repeated calls and complaints, a private construction company was called to the corner to pull out the dead street light and replaced it with a new one. But the saga was far from over: the streetlight remained inoperable because Con Edison hadn’t hook the new light up to the city’s grid.
That’s when this paper got involved: upon hearing of the light’ plight, we called Con Edison on Aug. 8. The next day, the utility company began the process of hooking up the new street light to the electric grid.
Yet the saga continued: Con Edison completed its work by Aug. 16, but the light was still out. When asked why, a Con Edison spokeswoman said that the responsibility now lied in the hands of the Department of Transportation.
“The light pole is alive and the base of the pole is electrified, but now it’s up to the city to complete the job,” said spokeswoman Joy Farber.
When we called the city on Aug. 16 to find out what was going on, a Department of Transportation spokesman said he would look into it. Shortly after the story went online the next day, the light was suddenly on.
Fischler, a former president of the 60th Precinct Community Council, was dancing in the street — under the new, now working street light — when our photographer caught up with him last week.
“This is a quiet, desolate area so something like a street light is a critical thing,” Fischler said. “We’ve had some burglaries down here, so we needed something to light up the area.”