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I-35W Park and Ride Lots and Structure

 Minneapolis, MN  Outdoor lighting

The Minnesota Department of Transportation and the Metropolitan Council chose Cree® LED luminaires over metal halide fixtures for parking upgrades and new construction projects.

Opportunity

The Minneapolis 2030 Transportation Policy Plan projects that bus ridership will double with transportation investments and land development. As a result, new park and ride structures in outlying Minneapolis are being developed to serve rapid transit and arterial bus systems. Operated by MetroTransit, I-35W Park & Ride parking lots and structures are a joint effort of the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MDOT) and the Metropolitan Council.

The Twin Cities metropolitan area was one of only five regions nationwide to win competitive funding from a U.S. Department of Transportation program aimed at reducing congestion. The federal Urban Partnership Agreement (UPA) is a collaboration of federal, state and local entities working to improve traffic by reducing congestion on Interstate 35W, Highway 77/Cedar Avenue and in downtown Minneapolis. Of the $133 million UPA federal grant, about $86 million is allocated to transit projects.

Solution

Construction of nearly 2,700 parking spaces at six new or expanded park and ride facilities along the Highway 77/Cedar Avenue and I-35W corridors north and south of downtown Minneapolis was completed in the fall of 2010. MetroTransit installed Cree® luminaires in park and ride ramps located in Lakeville, Roseville, Blaine and Cedar Grove. Each architecturally-unique structure has more than 600 parking garage luminaires illuminating interior, perimeter and surface parking spaces.

Bonestroo Inc. provided engineering design services for the Lakeville and Roseville parking structures. LED luminaires were selected for the value that energy efficient lighting products provide and the importance of using a sustainable light source.

“We analyzed pulse start metal halide, compact fluorescent and T5HO solutions and while they had a lower capital cost, everyone saw the value of energy and maintenance savings that LED provides. We took advantage of the photocell option that maximizes energy savings by allowing each fixture to turn off if the natural ambient lighting is high enough,” explained Mike FitzPatrick, PE, LEED AP associate for Bonestroo. “This is a better solution than the standard zone-controlled systems used on other projects. The LED fixtures allow us to do this because of the instant-on startup as compared to pulse start metal halide fixtures.”

Benefits

FitzPatrick noted additional advantages to using LED technology in unheated parking ramps. “Cold weather does not adversely affect LED fixtures as compared to the fluorescent lamps. The impressive lumen maintenance and controllability of the Cree® product provided us with a very maintenance-friendly project that is uniformly illuminated. Controlled illumination provided the Cree® luminaire with an advantage over induction which is sometimes considered to be a life-long solution. We selected Cree® because they were the first to have a reliable product in the LED market for parking garage applications,” he elaborated.

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