Case Study : Denver Fox31 Parking Garage

Denver Fox31 Parking Garage

Plagued by seemingly never-ending light maintenance in its two-deck parking garage, Denver’s Fox31 television news station has put an end to the incessant bulb and fixture changes and saved thousands of dollars in the process by converting to new high-efficiency DuroSite® LED Low Bay luminaires from Dialight Corporation. The retrofit slashed energy use by more than half and dramatically improved visibility inside the garage, while earning the station more than $10,000 in energy-efficiency rebates.

The Challenge

Like most multi-level enclosed parking garages, the Fox31 TV news station facility in Denver seemed a dark and cavernous space, made further uninviting by the low clearance (just 8-10 feet) between each deck. The facility’s 15-year-old metal halide lighting fixtures provided inconsistent illumination and low light levels, at best—as little as 1 footcandle in some areas. Not only were the fixtures themselves antiquated and inadequate for this kind of low-bay application, they were also inefficient, consuming 175W per unit (up to 208W including the ballast). Maintenance was a never-ending chore for Fox31 due to the metal halide’s inherently short lifespan and the high-profile news vans which seemed to impact the fixtures on a regular basis. The station was spending far too much time, about once per year, and money in replacing damaged lights and relamping all 147 fixtures. Considering that many were difficult to access, especially those lighting the steep ramps between the decks, the Fox station was eager to find a more modern, economical and energy-efficient solution to shed some much-needed light on its “den.”

Our Solution

At the recommendation of Denver-based LED Supply Co., the station replaced all 147 metal halides with new LED DuroSite Low Bay Fixtures from Dialight, the world leader in industrial LED lighting solutions. Offering a ruggedized, low-profile design at less than 9” in overall depth off the ceiling, the DuroSite Low Bays promised to put an end to the news vans knocking out the lights, while delivering a significant improvement in visibility at a much lower operating cost. “Low profile was a big factor in the decision to go with the Dialight fixtures,” said Brian Stern, president and CEO of LED Supply. “The Dialight units are a full six-inches shallower than the existing metal halides, which put them safely out of range for the satellite-topped news trucks.” Since the new Dialight fixtures were fully compatibility with the existing wiring and mounting brackets, changing all 147 lights was quick and easy, completed in just four days.

Durability, Efficiency and Savings Courtesy of Dialight

Consuming just 80W, the new Dialight Low Bays immediately reduced overall lighting electricity consumption by nearly 55 percent, while delivering up to 20 footcandles of crisp, clear white light with a CRI of 70, compared to the low light quality of the metal halides. “The improved visibility is quite dramatic, like night and day almost,” Stern said. “Since the optics in the Dialight units are optimized for low-bay applications, they efficiently direct the light exactly where it’s needed and better illuminate the area while minimizing glare, which makes for a safer environment for drivers in the facility.”

Years of Dependability and Ongoing Savings

Each DuroSite fixture boasts an anticipated fixture lifespan of at least 60,000 continuous hours, offering a worry-free and maintenance-free performance. Consequently, the station could potentially span over a decade without necessitating a single light bulb replacement, with half of that period covered by Dialight's comprehensive five-year performance warranty. Furthermore, given the exceptional resistance of Dialight units to shock and vibration—a significant concern in multi-level parking garages—these new lights promise a long-lasting durability that renders traditional metal halides virtually obsolete.

David Harpe, Vice President of Technology for KDVR and KWGN, reflects on this investment, stating, "This stands as one of our most prudent facility investments to date. Our facility operates around the clock with a staff exceeding two hundred employees. Opportunities for cost savings in such a setting are relatively scarce. While we had explored LED lighting solutions for some time, finding a fixture with the requisite performance and return on investment (ROI) proved challenging. Collaborating with the LED Supply Co. team, we devised a Dialight-based solution that emerged as a 'no-brainer' from a financial perspective. In addition to the cost savings and rapid ROI afforded by these lights, our staff has expressed high satisfaction with the improved light quality in our garage areas. We are genuinely pleased with our investment."

Xcel Energy Rebate

As a direct consequence of the substantial reduction in energy consumption, Fox31 became eligible for energy efficiency rebates totaling over $10,000—equivalent to slightly more than $70.00 per fixture—courtesy of Xcel Energy and the City of Denver. These incentives significantly offset the project's overall cost. Considering the rebate, the substantial energy savings, and the reduction in maintenance expenses, Fox31 anticipates achieving a payback period of slightly over 3 years—an exceptionally favorable return on investment for products that promise a lifespan nearly four times as long.


Dialight LED Benefits

  • 5 year warranty = maintenance free
  • 80% lumen maintenance after 60,000 hours
  • Up to 100 lm/w
  • Significant energy savings
  • Instant on/off
  • Superior light quality
  • IP66 rated to withstand dust and moisture
  • Polycarbonate lens
  • No UV or IR
  • No hazardous substances
  • Temperature compensation technology for long life