Mapping and auditing of the public lighting system

Mapping and auditing of the public lighting system in municipalities

Definition, objective and added value

The project of mapping and diagnosing the public lighting system aims at giving a complete picture of the actual state of the public lighting system of municipalities. It represents the first step in the process of good public lighting management and meets communal expectations in terms of identifying anomalies and dysfunctions of the system, as well as in terms of collecting data on the physical state of the system and energy consumption. More specifically, the objective of such a project is to provide:

  • A database of the communal lighting system (lighting units, network, etc.) with all relevant visual and technical characteristics;
  • A situational analysis of defects of lighting installations and the entire system;
  • Possibilities to reduce energy consumption;
  • And an investment plan for the maintenance and upgrading of the lighting system.

Working methods

The first step in the process of mapping the lighting system consists of collecting data of the different system components in the field (lighting units, roadways, underground cables, control cabinets, etc.). This raw data allows to detect the characteristics of the system and its components. It is then integrated into a specific database and forms the basis for the later audit.

The collected data then needs to be analyzed and synthetized into a number of main indicators describing the systems actual state of play: distribution of lighting units by type of the unit, by height and by type of lamps; state of dilapidation of lighting units, control cabinets, underground cables; number of lights which need to be replaced, needs to update standards, energy gains.

On the basis of the results of the audit and its recommendations, an investment plan can be elaborated. It defines the necessary amount of investment, the expected reduction in the energy bill and the return on investment.


The main implementation procedures include:

  • Develop terms of reference and common specifications which define and frame the communal requirement;
  • Creation of a steering and a technical committee;
  • Preparation of support material for the mapping and collection of data in the field;
  • Formation of teams and planning of human and material resources;
  • Information and training of the teams in charge of mapping and collecting data.

Practical examples

For several years, national authorities (including the Directorate-General of Local Authorities - DGCL) have encouraged Moroccan municipalities to carry out projects of mapping and auditing their public lighting systems. In 2006, the DGCL supported 10 municipalities (incl. Settat, Marrakech, Benguerir, Safi, Tetouan and Bouznika) in the implementation of such projects. In 2013, the GIZ programme CoMun assisted Rabat in the conduction of an audit. Agadir carried out its audit in 2014.

Reference documents in English

Reference documents in Arabic, French and German