A lighting upgrade recognized by the U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) is expected to reduce energy use by more than 60 percent for the Holt Public School district, which serves more than 5,000 students in nine buildings in central Michigan. The upgrades have helped to make the learning environment more comfortable: previously, overbright lighting had driven some teachers to turning classroom lights off entirely.
The district was among the winners of the 2022 Integrated Lighting Campaign recently announced by the U.S. Dept. of Energy and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. This distinction recognizes new advanced lighting systems that help to save energy and create a comfortable environment to live and work.
Prior to undertaking the project, Holt Public Schools worked with Trane to identify a comprehensive lighting solution that would cut costs and improve the learning environment for students, staff and teachers. Costs for the lighting upgrades at the district’s Wilcox Elementary School, Elliott Elementary School, Holt Junior High School, Holt High School and Midway Early Learning Center were funded with an Energy Bond, under a Guaranteed Performance Contract, overseen by the state of Michigan.
“This project helps us to save money by reducing our energy consumption and it provides an opportunity to create a personalized instructional environment for our students and teachers,” said Dr. David Hornak, Holt Public Schools Superintendent.
These infrastructure upgrades included the installation of 10,000 LED lighting fixtures across several buildings. Combined with HVAC and plumbing upgrades that are being completed this fall, these improvements will help the district reduce its energy consumption by more than $3 million over the next 12 years. Other highlights of the lighting project include:
- A centralized control capability to monitor the lighting activity and make adjustments to optimize functionality from a handheld device or a central location.
- An improved energy management system that allows motion sensors to control lighting for classrooms and hallways and permits automatic changes when schedule alterations occur without requiring regular programming.
- Enhanced security to provide centralized control of all lighting during emergency situations, the ability to dim parking lot lights when they are not in use as well as the capability for those lights to go on when a car or person enters the parking lot.
“The integrated energy management system gives real-time measurements of the energy consumption, as well as a quick response if a piece of equipment is in alarm,” said Rick Brown, Director of Facilities for Holt Public Schools.