SHAMOKIN - Paving on Independence Street will wrap up next week, bringing an end to the downtown street lighting project.

Weather permitting, portions of the street will be paved during daytime hours Wednesday and Thursday. Traffic controls will be in place. Paving has been coordinated with other utility companies working nearby.

Forty-four high-pressure sodium street lights and fixtures on new aluminum poles were installed by a subcontractor after the old poles and bases were removed between Market and Shamokin streets. New underground conduit was installed.

Shamokin pays a combined $11,200 in monthly tariffs, $134,400 annually, to cover maintenance and distribution charges for all 664 street lights in the city, which are owned by PPL Electric Utilities. The tariffs are funding the project and there is no additional cost to the city.

A different company, Constellation Electric, supplies electricity to the street lighting system. They're paid about $1,200 monthly for the service.

The lighting had increasingly malfunctioned over the years, including during heavy rainfall, and at times has left parts or all of Independence Street dark.