detroit at night*(Via NY Daily News) – It could be lights out for much of the Motor City.

Detroit officials say an economic squeeze and population loss is forcing them to permanently turn off almost half of its streetlights in some vacant and dwindling areas — a drastic step other cash-strapped cities across the United States have employed.

“You have to identify those neighborhoods where you want to concentrate your population,” Chris Brown, Detroit’s chief operating officer, told Bloomberg News. “We’re not going to light distressed areas like we light other areas.”

As it turns out, about 40% of the city’s 88,000 street lamps are already broken, Bloomberg News reported Thursday.

As part of Mayor Dave Bing’s proposal, an authority would be created to borrow $160 million to remove the streetlights and upgrade the remaining 46,000, with the city then contracting out maintenance of the system, Bloomberg News said.

Officials believe the city would ultimately save about $10 million a year from the move.

Read/learn more at NY Daily News.