Trane recently presented the City of Vestavia Hills, AL, with an Energy Efficiency Leader Award. The city reported that replacement of outdated lighting with highly efficient illumination at the city’s sports fields, pool, and tennis courts is generating a nearly 50% decrease in energy usage. Leaders also anticipate that the more efficient lighting systems could potentially reduce maintenance costs by up to $5,000 a month.

Prior to the upgrades, some of the city’s outdated fixtures were nearly 30 years old. With better concentrated lighting a result of the upgrades, the city has been able to reduce the number of fixtures from 1,400 to a little over 700, drastically reducing electricity costs. The city’s limited maintenance staff, previously required to visit each park on a schedule to turn the lights on and off, now uses automated controls on the new lighting system to complete the job remotely, saving manpower and electricity.

According to the city, the lighting, which was provided by Musco Lighting, has improved safety for players and increased visibility for fans, making the city more competitive in its bids for sports tournaments, while helping to increase local revenues. No capital outlay was required for the project so the city has been able to use its limited funds for other needed expenditures.

The city funded the improvements with a performance contract, which allowed the city to use future energy and operational savings to finance the infrastructure improvements up front. Performance contracting is a funding option that provides measurable business results to support strategic objectives.