Athletic Facilities Light The Way
Athletic facilities present unique challenges in serving a dynamic environment, as they literally “light the way” for athletes, fans, even sponsors to participate in sporting events. From league games to practice sessions, exhibitions and athletic demonstrations, building managers in a variety of industries are always on the lookout to find new technologies that will create an engaging and safe environment for the myriad number of teams and organizations who enter these sports venues.
Although less than 10 percent of the U.S. market of sports facilities have made the switch to LED, the market is exploding, as many building managers and owners have begun to retrofit their facility with LED lights, due to the incredible savings and the powerful impact they have had on the entire athletic experience. These applications span from major league franchise stadiums to high schools and private operators of athletic arenas.
In Syracuse, The War Memorial Arena, host to the American Hockey League’s Syracuse Crunch, was the first professional hockey arena to install LED lighting. Forbes reported that the Crunch “reduced its power usage from 263,000 kilowatts to roughly 32,000 kilowatts by switching to LED.” An 87 percent reduction in energy!
Last year, the Seattle Mariners became the first professional baseball team to illuminate their playing field with LED lights.
These new LED lights are projected to operate for more than 100,000 hours, which is more than three times the lights they are replacing, while significantly improving player and fan experience and completely eliminating the traditional 20-minute warm-up period of metal halide bulbs.
Cornell University has begun to install new LED lights at all campus athletic facilities at its Ithaca campus. According to the Cornell Chronicle, Men’s Basketball coach Bill Courtney, “every student-athlete wants to play in the best environment possible, and the new LED lighting enables that.” This retrofit is projected to reduce utility bills by about $136,000. This is estimated to prevent about 450 tons of carbon dioxide annually.
Electricity accounts for the largest portion of most athletic facilities’ energy budget, and lighting alone represents around 25 percent of the total electricity consumed, and almost 40 percent of the total electric cost for a typical athletic arena or gym. With energy costs in the U.S. averaging over $2 per square foot, building managers and school administrators are increasingly attracted to LED to improve their operation.
Building management companies and property owners are rapidly shifting to new technology to reduce costs, improve operations and manage energy expenses and to meet the demands of more discriminating tenants.
LED retrofits and new installations deliver:
- Increased energy management capability
- Lower electricity demand and costs
- Enhanced ability to monitor energy usage
- Improve aesthetics for individual room/area applications
With the rapid evolution of LED lighting technology, athletic facilities are rapidly converting to LED to create a more inviting environment for their teams, fans and owners alike.
Today, LED applications are lighting up a wide range of athletic venues, including:
- Rinks, gyms, tennis courts, football fields
- Arena corridors and circulation areas
- Locker rooms
- Luxury suites
- Parking and outdoor areas
- Ticketing windows
- Reception and lobbies
- Fitness areas
Original Energy LED Solutions
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