Brighter and whiter lighting is being installed at the City-owned Santa Maria Town Center Parking Structure A, replacing the high-pressure sodium lights that cast an amber color.  The results are better visibility for shoppers and employees at nearby stores, offices and government buildings.

Nearly all the existing lights on the lower level of the parking structure have been replaced with new induction light fixtures by the contractor performing the work for the City.  More new lights will be placed on all three levels of the 1,800-space parking structure located between Cook and Miller streets, on the east side of the downtown mall.  On the third (roof) level, new energy-efficient lights will be placed on the 20 light towers starting today.  The project will be finished in a few weeks.

“This project is timely with the busiest shopping season upon us and our ‘Thank You for Shopping Santa Maria’ program going full steam,” said Dave Cross with the Santa Maria Economic Development Commission, a division of the Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce.  “Town Center East shoppers and employees will appreciate the improved lighting and added sense of security.”

The induction lights emit a more natural white light but use less electricity.  Compared to high-pressure sodium lights that each draws 150 watts, the new induction lights require only 85 watts each, however there are more lighting fixtures.  The new lights also have a much longer life expectancy.  In addition, a new lighting controller is being installed which will allow for more efficient programming of the lights and circuitry.  This will further reduce long-term operating costs.

The Department of Public Works chose to do this project with one-time funding granted to the City through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009.  Through a competitive bidding process, Santa Maria Electric, Inc. was awarded the job by the City Council on July 6th for $558,720.

Questions may be directed to Principal Civil Engineer Shad Springer in the Department of Public Works, 925-0951 ext. 225.