In 2000, research projects carried out by the University of Cambridge’s Institute of Criminology, investigated the effects of improved street lighting on crime in two urban areas in the UK. In Dudley, crimes decreased by 41% in the experimental area, compared to a 15% decrease in a control area.
In Stoke, crimes decreased by 43% in the experimental area and by 45% in two adjacent areas, compared with a decrease of only 2% in two control areas. The conclusion was that the savings from reduced crimes exceeded the financial costs of the street lighting improvements by between 2.4 and 10 times after one year. The link between crime rates and illumination suggest that the new lights not only help to combat crime, but also pay for themselves by reducing illegal activity.