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The university is replacing 380 light fixtures to improve campus safety
Improved campus lighting
Northwestern State is first to use new technology
By David West

NATCHITOCHES – Northwestern State University is completing a campus-wide lighting project that will improve campus safety while lowering energy costs. The $380,000 project is being made possible through American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 funding awarded to the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources. 

According to Director of Physical Plant Operations Chuck Bourg, the project is part of a partnership with Sylvania Lighting Services using LED chips with a Sylvania D6-fixture. 

 “We are part of a case study with Sylvania Lighting Services and are the first to use this type of technology,” said Bourg. “The new technology uses less energy to power the fixture as well as enhance the foot candles for greater output.  We will work together to determine the differences in lighting and energy usage between the old fixtures and the new ones.”

 Bourg says the new fixtures may be able to more than double the lighting at cutting energy consumption in half.

 “Northwestern State is working to be a greener campus and reducing our energy usage is one way to meet that goal,” said Bourg.

 The lighting project began late last summer. During the Thanksgiving holidays, workers replaced 333 of the old antique-style acorn-type fixtures. Over the next few weeks, the remaining 47 fixtures will be replaced.

 The new lights are incredible and increase visibility and student safety on campus,” said Northwestern State Student Government Association President Tara Luck. “I think they will help with many if the security issues I have been fighting so hard to help resolve.”

As part of the case study, before and after photos are being taken of the fixtures. Bourg said the photos would be used to determine where additional lighting is needed to enhance safety on campus as well as where lighting may need to be replaced. Early next year, Northwestern State will start replacing all interior lights in each academic building. The university is considering using occupancy sensors for lighting controls in each facility, according to Bourg.

The LED lighting project was among three energy-saving projects at Northwestern State funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. NSU’s Shreveport campus received improvements to its heating and air conditioning system at a cost of $380,000. An auxiliary chiller was installed at Prather Coliseum at a cost of $180,000. Bourg said both projects would yield significant energy savings to the university.