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Thread: Parking Lot lighting requirements

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Miami, Fl, USA
    Posts
    4

    Parking Lot lighting requirements

    Hello all,

    I am working on an R-3 residential building that includes a small 6 car parking lot.

    Unfortunately parking lot lighting is not something i know very much about.

    What codes govern the lighting of parking lots, when they are required and the illumination levels.

    I am hoping to be able to get by without adding light poles, and just adding illumination from the building's second floor.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Bremerton, Washington
    Posts
    7,636
    The IESNA has recommended standards for parking lot lighting.
    If you put lighting on the second floor, there will be a lot of glare and uplight. Luminare poles will do a better job.
    Get together with you wholesale house and see if they can help you with a lighting layout

    And drive around at night, look for applications similar to yours, to get an idea of how it will work.
    And at lease stub out a couple of 1" conduits...
    Moderator-Washington State
    Ancora Imparo

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Colorado & New Mexico
    Posts
    6
    Generally there no parking lot lighting requirements in the widely used national codes - but check your local codes. Some cities limit lot lighting to prevent light pollution / light trespass, and others require minimum lot lighting for safety or security reasons.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    121
    Official guidelines by IES for foot candle levels on parking lots.

    “Minimum horizontal point at any point should be .5fc and min vertical luminance at 5’ above finished grade is .25fc”.
    Ken
    Electrical Project Coordinator


    "Communication, its a wonderful thing, when it happens."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    Colorado & New Mexico
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by ken44 View Post
    Official guidelines by IES for foot candle levels on parking lots.

    “Minimum horizontal point at any point should be .5fc and min vertical luminance at 5’ above finished grade is .25fc”.
    Your information is a bit out of date. Older versions of the IES Handbook gave specific values like you state here, but they have backed off that kind of approach. The reason is that the lighting design industry now recognizes that the "correct" light levels for exterior environments vary widely depending on adjacent light levels, occupant activities, and occupant age. In other words, 0.5 fc / 0.25 fc minimums may provide good visibility in some scenarios, but not in all scenarios. Uniformity of illuminance is also an important consideration, because contrast has a huge impact on nighttime visibility.

    (Reference - See Table 26.2 in the current Handbook (10th Edition). It does not give one-size-fits-all illuminance targets like previous editions did.)

    Back to the OP's situation - most likely you are not code-required to light the parking lot at all. But if the owner wants to light it, you should consult someone with exterior lighting design knowledge. Manufacturers and suppliers will help for free.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Dayton, OH
    Posts
    131

    lot lighting

    And pay attention to the local Zoning Regs. Some localities get very strict wrt Pole Ht, Color Temp, trespass, uplight pollution, BUG ratings, etc.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Upstate S.C.
    Posts
    828
    Get with the local electric utility and have them do it. They do this every day and have the equipment to install and provide upkeep. And you don't have to provide power, they will.

    RC
    It's my name going on that drawing, not yours. If what you want ain't right, it ain't going on the drawings!

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