Chapter 2: Lighting Systems, Highway Eligibility, and Warrants

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Section 1: Overview

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Introduction

This chapter describes the different lighting systems, which roadways are eligible for those systems, and the conditions that warrant each system.

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Types of Lighting Systems

Title 43, Texas Administrative Code, Section 25.11 defines two basic types of roadway lighting systems — “continuous illumination” and “safety lighting.” The rules also describe instances in which continuous lighting may be classified as safety lighting. Subsequent sections of this chapter describe each of these types.

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Eligibility and Warrants

The rules specify the types of highways eligible for the spending of state funds on each type of illumination system. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) can only install and maintain lighting systems on eligible roadways where the conditions warrant such installation.

Eligibility. Eligibility requirements for each type of lighting system are described in the relevant sections of this chapter.

Warrants. TxDOT uses criteria called warrants to justify the need for and expense of roadway lighting at eligible locations. To determine if an eligible location meets the relevant warrant, TxDOT assesses roadway conditions in terms of criteria called “cases.” These cases are coded for ease of reference. The code consists of either “CL” (for continuous lighting) or “SL” (for safety lighting) followed by a dash and a number (for example: CL-2 or SL-4).

When roadway conditions meet or exceed one or more of the relevant cases, then the roadway in question warrants the lighting — in other words, the warrant is met.

After the warrant is met, TxDOT may enter into a partnership agreement with the city or local government (if necessary) and program the financing.

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Submitting Substantiating Data

Districts should submit data substantiating that warrants are met with the request for programming or financing to the Transportation Planning and Programming Division.

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Process Summary

When a lighting system is proposed (by a local government, citizens, or TxDOT personnel), the district first determines the eligibility of the roadway. If the roadway is eligible, then the district assesses conditions to determine if the lighting system is actually warranted. Only after both eligibility and the warrant (warranting conditions) are established, can the district execute an agreement with the local government (if necessary) and proceed with design and installation. Figure 2-1 provides a flow chart of this process.

Highway lighting system process summary. (click in image to see full-size image) Anchor: #i998560grtop

Figure 2-1. Highway lighting system process summary.

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