Case Studies


St Mary's College

St Mary's College McKeon Arena lighting before the upgrade

St Mary's College

St Mary's College McKeon Arena lighting after the upgrade

Enlight improves St Mary’s College arena lighting

St. Mary’s College is a division 1A School with top notch basketball and volleyball programs.  The lighting in the McKeon arena at St. Mary’s was not up to the same standards as the teams, and St. Mary’s wanted to improve it without increasing the energy usage more than necessary.

The overhead lighting in the gym consisted of 34 400-watt metal halide high bay fixtures with badly depreciated lamps.  The metal halide ceiling lights provided 17 foot-candles on the floor. In order to increase the light levels so that games could be televised, 30 100-watt metal halide floodlights had been mounted on the roof along the sidelines of the court.  The television lights increased the light levels to 80 foot-candles at center court, but because the arena has a relatively low 30 foot ceiling, the lights caused glare in the players’ eyes, and reflections from the floor into the television cameras.

The best athletic lighting provides even, glare-free light from above that has wide enough distribution to give even lighting on the floor and to provide good lighting on vertical surfaces.  In addition, the new lighting should be low maintenance and energy efficient. 

Initially, Enlight recommended T-5 HO fixtures mounted on the ceiling, but St. Mary’s didn’t like the square look of the fixtures.  Our recommendation for round fixtures was 250 watt induction fixtures from FSC Lighting in Santa Fe Springs, California.  We installed 84 250-watt induction high bay fixtures, and achieved 120 foot-candles at center court with even distribution and good vertical lighting.  The induction lights have a 100,000 hour rated life and CRI of 85.

Because they don’t need full lighting for all activities, we recommended tri-level lighting control.  For most activities St. Mary’s would be using less energy than the 400-watt metal halides were using but getting triple the light levels.

The basketball coach commented, “I knew the lighting would be improved, but I couldn’t have imagined how much better it could be.  This is fantastic!”