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City of Raleigh
Existing Parking Deck Facility Lighting
Business Case Evaluation
April 2012
Background
The City of Raleigh parking decks provide the community and its visitors with convenient
parking facilities necessary for access to their places of employment, shopping, restaurants,
entertainment venues, the Convention Center, and special events. The lighting of these
facilities is a critical public safety function and can have an important impact on the quality of the
experience of the City’s citizens and visitors when they make use of these facilities.
Currently, the City operates ten parking decks, two of which were constructed with light emitting
diode (LED) fixtures. The remaining parking decks are predominantly lighted by more than
3,900
light fixtures that include high pressure sodium fixtures, metal halide fixtures, fluorescent
light fixtures, incandescent light fixtures or a mixture of these fixtures. These fixtures illuminate
the parking areas, stair wells, elevators, mechanical rooms and exterior areas. Attachment A
provides an itemized listing of lighting fixtures by parking deck.
The lighting of the eight City’s non-LED parking decks is estimated to cost the City on average
$300,000 annually in both power and maintenance costs. There are options for the City to
improve efficiency related to energy savings through reduced energy consumption, and
maintenance savings through increased fixture life cycles. These advances in efficiency can be
gained along with the potential to improve upon the current level of service related to lighting the
parking deck facilities.
In 2007, the City partnered with Cree to evaluate the efficacy of LED lighting through a pilot
project at the Municipal Building parking deck, switching one level from the previous high
pressure sodium fixtures to LEDs. This pilot project resulted in a number of favorable findings
including power and maintenance cost savings, quality of light improvements and improvements
in City customer perspectives on their parking deck experience (Cree, 2007). However, the pilot
study did find that cost savings alone would not justify changing lighting fixtures to LED before
the end of their useable life.
As part of the City’s efforts to promote environmental and economic sustainability this business
case evaluation will review and recommend a path forward for the City’s parking deck lighting
replacement strategy based on the evaluation of financial and non-financial factors for a range
of potential options to transition the City’s parking decks to LED lighting.
Problem to be Addressed
The City continues to evaluate means to be more efficient with its resources while maintaining
or improving its service to customers. LED lighting presents an opportunity to improve
operating efficiency, through increased energy efficiency and longer fixture life cycles, and the
potential for enhanced parking deck customer experience.
Options
The range of potential options for the City’s existing parking deck lighting replacement includes:
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Status quo:
Continue lighting replacement with current types of lighting fixtures.