Columbia parks and recreation proposes LED sporting lights

7 months 6 days 10 hours ago Sunday, July 16 2017 Jul 16, 2017 Sunday, July 16, 2017 2:17:00 PM CDT July 16, 2017 in News
By: Lydia Nusbaum, KOMU 8 Reporter

COLUMBIA - The Columbia Parks and Recreation Department is looking to add light-emitting diode sporting lights to an outdoor football and soccer field in Cosmo Park.

The Columbia City Council will review the proposal Monday, July 17 at the city council meeting. If the council approves the proposal, the department would add lights to football field number 5 and soccer field number 3. 

Gabe Huffington, the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department parks and services manager, said this would be the first time LED lights are installed on outdoor fields. 

Huffington said the Sporting Columbia Soccer Club and Columbia Youth Football Association use the fields and told him there is a need for additional lighting. 

"The lighting will allow us to play more games over those evenings and then also tournaments on the weekends," Huffington said. 

Huffington said the current lighting on the sports fields are metal halide, but the department can now afford these LED lights. 

"We actually will be able to have some lower energy costs moving forward," Huffington said. "With the LED technology, the bulbs last longer, so we don't anticipate on having to go in and replace bulbs as often as we do now with those metal halides."

The project will cost $250,420 and will be funded by the 2015 Parks Sales Tax, the revenue from a temporary cell tower at Cosmo Park and a grant from the U.S. Soccer Foundation. 

The Columbia Parks and Recreation Department anticipates the utilities bills for both sports fields will increase by approximately $2,000 to $4,000 per year. However, the department thinks the additional revenue from groups renting the fields and from other cosponsored program fees will help offset the additional costs. 

The city council plans to discuss the proposal at the upcoming city council meeting. 

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