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Lighting Ordinances

Discussion in 'Landscape Lighting' started by steveparrott, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. steveparrott

    steveparrott Sponsor
    Posts: 1,196

    I came across an interesting directory of Dark Sky ordinances (existing and proposed) for states and municipalities. (states at the top, municipalties at the bottom).


    I haven't looked at these closely, but I've heard from IESNA and IDA spokespeople that many of these ordinances are poorly written and nearly impossible to follow (especially with regards to landscape lighting).

    1. Are any of you guys dealing with unreasonable and overly restrictive ordinances?

    2. Do you think manufacturers and industry groups should get involved with supporting the changing of any of these.
  2. Pro-Scapes

    Pro-Scapes LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,181

    MS seems so lax on everything. I would definatly like to see some more regulation here as some lighting companies are placing hid lights near the tops of trees shining up and down. It really does make a difference. There is also a community that has these AWFUL metal halides all over the streets.

    I lit a property next to a property that had hids/merc vapors and had to change my original plan due to the ambient light created from the nieghbors system. I needed to increase number of fixtures as well as wattages.

    To answer your finaly question yes, but not just manufactures and industry groups but the entire industry as a whole. This is where manufactures... aolp and darksky should all work together as a group.
  3. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    I could go on for hours on this topic. I have built my entire business on Environmentally friendly, dark sky friendly lighting systems. I have consulted municipalities, service groups, community organizations, environmental associations and rate payers associations on this issue. I have developed a public service program to educate property owners and I have delivered numerous presentations on the issues. I have also worked alongside my municipality in developing and then adopting a set of lighting guidelines / regulations for the development / re-development of commercial and waterfront properties.

    Most recently, I have developed a protocol for analysing, mapping and tracking the outdoor lighting footprint of any given community, street, bay, lake, etc etc. I call this the shoreline/community lighting assessment program (SLAP or CLAP) It uses real time observations mapped onto GIS data to create first benchmarks and then subsequent analysis for the purpose of measuring light pollution sources and remedies.

    I could go on and on... but if you want to know more, maybe just email me.
  4. ChampionLS

    ChampionLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,066

    Our very stupid liberal town opted to install a new "Green Park" on a small plot of land as you enter from the west. The "Green Park" funded by taxpayer money was built on a triangular shaped property that was formerly a used car lot. After some town meetings a plan was unveiled to install a environmentally conscious "Green" park. They built a massive berm and installed about 20 trees in a grid, and installed up lighting. They also installed a sign that says High-Land-Park, although our town is "Highland Park", and that sign is back lit. The whole park is sloped to allow rain water to first be filtered, before returning to the environment. At the bottom is a huge pit. The pit has a storm drain at the bottom, which is empties into the nearby Raritan River, about 200 feet away. At one end of the park, there is a residential two story home. FIVE FEET from the second floor bedroom window is a Mercury Vapor street light, with THREE More less than 20 feet away. These lights are placed along a sidewalk which is the only pedestrian path near the park. The units produce so much light pollution it's ridiculous! I can't imagine how the people living in that house feel. (probably renters) Even sitting at the traffic light you need to use your sun visor. The light over powers all the landscape lighting. I will shoot a pic of it and post it here. I'm at the point where I feel like calling the newspapers about it. So much for helping the environment!. :cry:
  5. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Posts: 1,945

    The largest geographic community in my county, and the wealthiest, permits no uplighting.

    The industry needs to work with Dark Sky. It's my observation that we need certification and dare I say regulation, to promote quality illumination as much as possible, before more places say "no LV lighting."

    James, I would kill for a powerpoint that can speak for the significant issues regarding good lighting design vs. bad, also including issues regarding continuous service and quality materials.

    If I can't get something like this from a colleague or manu, I will make my own, but it will take a lot of research time and photography I don't readily have.

    These are things that could be offered as membership to lighting organizations.

    Mike M
  6. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Posts: 1,945

    IDA can supply materials, such as slides, handouts
    you can copy and use, fact sheets, and so
    forth. Develop your own local facts and information
    and examples of good and bad lighting; send
    copies to IDA

    FYI: quote from dark sky website.

    Looks like I may be joining.

    Mike M

    If anyone else can help me to put together a nice powerpoint on the issues in this thread I'd appreciate it.
  7. INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting

    INTEGRA Bespoke Lighting LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,102

    Mike, I have a powerpoint presentation that I built. It is a 20 minute talk and 'slide show' that explains what light pollution is, what some of the negative impacts of light pollution are, and then goes on to talk about what home owners and DIY'ers can do to reduce the light pollution coming from their property and their municipalities.

    It took some time to compose and write and I have delivered this program to about 15 different audiences so far. I basically did what you are about to do... I joined the IDA, I used a lot of their resources to develop the program and then I promoted this to my community. It worked out very well.

    If you have any specific questions or hurdles give me a call.

  8. Mike M

    Mike M LawnSite Bronze Member
    from usa
    Posts: 1,945

    I'm going to join and do this asap. I need to get a lap top.
  9. pete scalia

    pete scalia LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 960

    Forget dark sky
  10. irrig8r

    irrig8r LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,535

    Jeez Pete, we missed you. Where ya been?

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