Reduces Costs and Achieves Long-Term Flexibility
Seattle’s South Lander Business Park boasts a variety of tenants from small retail spaces to large warehouses – all with differing lighting needs that may change over time. Starting in 2016, the owners knew they needed to upgrade their outdated fluorescent lighting to something more adaptable, flexible and cost-effective. The answer? LED fixtures with luminaire level lighting controls (LLLCs)
After first learning about LLLCs, the executive team at South Lander decided to test out the technology in some of its smaller tenant spaces. With embedded sensors in each LED fixture, LLLCs offer innovative controls strategies that provide maximum energy savings, easy installation and maintenance and flexibility in space utilization.
With the help of Seattle City Light and their energy efficiency incentives to offset the cost of LLLC projects, South Lander installed the Cree SmartCast LLLC system in several 2,000-3,000 sq. ft. tenant spaces and the Philips EasySense LLLC system in a 30,000 sq. ft. space occupied by BNSF. These installations revealed both owner and tenant could reap benefits from energy savings to reduced maintenance costs – for essentially just the added cost of a sensor.
For the South Lander owners, installing an LLLC system meant they didn’t have to worry about time intensive and costly wiring in the event a tenant’s lighting needs changed, or a tenant moved out. “The main features we were looking for in this project were flexibility, tenant turnover and energy savings, and improved light quality was also an added bonus,” South Lander Business Park owner Joe Mitter said. “With just a phone app, I can now reconfigure the lighting in a space which gives us way more flexibility for switching things over when a tenant moves out.”
“Energy and maintenance costs are the top two reasons, in addition to overall better quality of light. In almost all cases, I would tell people to spend the extra amount for controls because they give you so much future flexibility. We’re future-proofing our lighting for the next 15-20 years.” - Joe Mitter, South Lander Business Park Owner
South Lander's Largest Tenant Makes the Switch
After successfully using LLLC in several of its spaces, South Lander helped BNSF, its largest tenant, make the switch. According to Mitter, BNSF features nearly 30,000 sq. ft. of space across two buildings and has unique tenant needs: they regularly change over their spaces for different uses, and employees have varying lighting preferences throughout various offices and conferences rooms.
With LLLCs, BNSF has addressed all of those challenges – including the ability to create lighting zones in their warehouse so they don’t have to turn on lights in all 5,000 sq. ft. at once. In terms of energy savings, BNSF and the business park’s other tenants have significantly cut their utility bills – for many, the system now pays for itself with energy costs lower than the monthly costs of the system. And, they’ve eliminated maintenance and ballast replacement costs. In just the first year alone, BNSF has saved $7,500 on its utility bills.
Why Luminaire Level Lighting Controls?
Many utilities also offer incentives to offset the costs of Luminaire Level Lighting Controls systems. South Lander Business Park worked with Seattle City Light to make the switch to LLLCs – contact your local utility to find out if incentives are currently available in your area.