(1) Purpose of Outdoor Lighting Standards. The outdoor lighting standards are intended to produce efficient, effective, and attractive outdoor lighting that is appropriate to the need and prevents glare. The standards are designed to:
(a) Provide for nighttime safety, utility, security and productivity while conserving energy and other resources.
(b) Minimize glare, light trespass and light pollution.
(c) Curtail the degradation of the nighttime environment to enhance citizens’ enjoyment and protect the natural cycles of plants and animals that require darkness at night in order to thrive.
(2) Applicability of Outdoor Lighting Standards. Except as exempted by provisions of this land use code in EC 9.6725(5) below, the installation of outdoor lighting fixtures shall be subject to these lighting standards.
(3) Shielding. All lighting fixtures subject to a lighting permit shall be cutoff and additional shielding shall be required, as necessary, to direct the light within the boundaries of the development site. Fixtures for exterior illumination of signs, including signs attached to a building, shall be top-mounted as well as shielded to aim the light downward onto the sign only. (See also EC 9.6640 General Provisions, section (6) Illumination Standards.)
(4) Prohibited Types of Lights. Decorative lasers, continuously flashing lights and searchlights are prohibited. In Intrinsically Dark Areas and Low Ambient Light Areas, as defined in EC 9.6725(8), high pressure sodium lights, mercury vapor lights, and flood lights are prohibited, except when used to illuminate walkways and bikepaths in compliance with applicable standards. High pressure sodium lights are permitted in other situations only when the maximum initial lumens generated by each lighting fixture does not exceed 2,250 lumens.
(5) Exemptions to Lighting Standards. The following lighting fixtures are exempt from meeting these lighting standards:
(a) Lighting fixtures that were lawfully installed prior to August 1, 2001 are exempt from meeting these lighting standards until the lighting fixture is replaced due to necessity or choice.
(b) A lighting fixture that does not exceed 1,500 lumens when the light is directed within the boundaries of the development site.
(c) Emergency lighting.
(d) Lighting fixtures that must conform with federal or state regulations, such as airport runway lights, TV and radio transmission towers, telecommunication towers and railroad lights.
(e) Holiday lights and decorations in place during the period between November 15 and January 15, except such lights shall not cause excessive glare that creates a public safety hazard.
(f) Temporary lighting installed for temporary activities.
(g) Lighting for governmental flags.
(h) Temporary lighting necessary for construction sites.
(i) Public streetlights designed, permitted and constructed in accordance with standards and specifications adopted pursuant to Chapter 7 of this code.
(6) Lighting Permit Required.
(a) Except as provided in EC 9.6725(5) Exemptions to Lighting Standards, no person shall install outdoor lighting unless a lighting permit for the lights has been issued by the building and permit services manager. A lighting permit for the construction and continued use of a light shall be subject to the terms and conditions stated in the permit and to the lighting standards.
(b) Maintenance of a lighting fixture shall not require a lighting permit.
(c) Failure to abide by the terms of a lighting permit or applicable provisions of the lighting standards shall invalidate a lighting permit. The building and permit services manager may take steps as are necessary to abate such a light as a public nuisance.
(7) Lighting Permit Application and Approval Process.
(a) An application and related information shall be submitted by the applicant, in a manner prescribed by the city, together with a fee established by the city manager as provided by EC 2.020 City Manager – Authority to Set Fees and Charges.
(b) The building and permit services manager shall approve a lighting permit based on verification by a lighting specialist that the plan complies with applicable lighting standards in this land use code.
(c) An approved lighting permit shall expire 180 days after the applicant has been notified of the lighting permit approval unless the applicant has paid all fees and the approved permit has been issued to the applicant.
(d) Unless the permit holder requests an extension of the permit and demonstrates good cause for such an extension, a lighting permit shall expire if the lighting construction or other work authorized by the lighting permit is not completed within 180 days after the date of issuance.
(e) No lighting permit shall be considered fully complete until the permit holder has notified the city that work is finished and a lighting specialist has inspected the lighting and is satisfied that the lighting construction complies with the lighting standards.
(8) Creation of Outdoor Lighting Classifications. To ensure appropriate lighting while minimizing its undesirable side effects, the zones established elsewhere in this land use code are consolidated into lighting zones, as follows:
(a) Intrinsically Dark Areas (O-1) shall consist of land zoned NR Natural Resource or contained within a conservation area/natural resource protection area. These areas are discouraged from providing lighting except where it is desirable to illuminate walkways, bike paths or other areas to be used after dark. Where lighting is to be provided the following standards shall apply:
1. Except for pedestrian/bike tunnels, the walkway or pathway shall be illuminated to a minimum average maintained luminance of .3 foot-candle and not to exceed a maximum average maintained luminance of .9 foot-candle.
2. The pedestrian/bike tunnel shall be illuminated to a minimum average maintained luminance of 4.0.
3. Any other lighting fixtures not illuminating walkways, bike paths, or tunnels shall be designed to direct light downward, and light sources shall have an initial output of no more than 1,500 lumens.
(b) Low Ambient Light Areas (O-2) shall consist of land zoned R-1 Low Density Residential, R-1.5 Rowhouse, R-2 Medium-Density Residential, C-1 Neighborhood Commercial, PL Public Land, or PRO Park, Recreation and Open Space, unless determined to have a high level of nighttime activity as set forth in EC 9.6725(8)(d), and any other zone not specifically listed under EC 9.6725(8)(a), (c), or (d). These areas are discouraged from providing lighting except where it is desirable to illuminate walkways, bike paths, parking lots or other areas to be used after dark. Where lighting is to be provided for all areas except parking lots, the following standards shall apply:
1. Walkways or pathways shall be illuminated to a minimum average maintained luminance of .3 foot-candle and not to exceed a maximum average maintained luminance of .9 foot-candle.
2. Pedestrian/bike tunnels shall be illuminated to a minimum average maintained luminance of 4.0.
3. Any other lighting fixtures not illuminating walkways, bike paths, tunnels, or parking lots shall be designed to direct light downward, and light sources shall have an initial output of no more than 1,500 lumens.
Parking lot lighting shall comply with standards found at EC 9.6725(9).
(c) Medium Ambient Light Areas (O-3) shall be permitted on land zoned R-3 Limited High-Density Residential and R-4 High-Density Residential.
(d) High Ambient Light Areas (O-4) shall be permitted in areas planned or developed for a mix of uses and a high level of nighttime activity. This includes areas in the broad zone category of commercial, except for C-1, and areas in the broad zone category of employment and industrial. It also includes portions of colleges and universities, high schools, the fairgrounds, and other areas zoned PL determined by the planning director to have a high level of nighttime activity. Areas determined not to have a high level of nighttime activity that are zoned PL shall be considered Low Ambient Light Areas (O-2).
(9) Parking Lot Lighting. Parking lot lighting shall be designed to provide the minimum lighting necessary to ensure adequate vision and comfort in parking areas, and not to cause glare or direct illumination onto adjacent properties or streets. Parking lot lighting shall comply with the following standards:
(a) All lighting fixtures serving parking lots shall be cut-off fixtures as defined by the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA) and as defined in this land use code.
(b) Alternative: Within an officially designated historic district, the design for an area may suggest the use of parking lot lighting fixtures of a particular “period” or architectural style, as either alternatives or supplements to the lighting described above.
1. If such fixtures are not “cut-off” fixtures as defined by IESNA, the maximum initial lumens generated by each fixture shall not exceed 2000.
2. Mounting heights of such alternative fixtures shall not exceed 20 feet.
(c) Parking area lighting standards in the various lighting areas are as shown in Table 9.6725(9) Parking Lot Lighting Standards.
Table 9.6725(9) Parking Lot Lighting Standards
High Ambient Areas O-4
Medium Ambient Areas O-3
Low Ambient Areas O-2
Mounting Height (Maximum). (Mounting height is the vertical distance between the surface being illuminated and the bottom of the lighting fixture.
Minimum – Maximum Average Maintained Illumination Level.
.6 to 4.0 foot-candle
.6 to 2.0 foot-candle
.2 to .8 foot-candle
Uniformity Ratio. (Uniformity ratio is the ratio of average illumination to minimum illumination.)
(10) Lighting of Service Station/Convenience Store Aprons and Canopies. Lighting levels on service station/convenience store aprons and under canopies shall be adequate to facilitate the activities taking place in such location. Lighting of such areas shall not be used to attract attention to the business. Signs allowed under the appropriate section of these regulations shall be used for that purpose. These uses shall comply with the following standards:
(a) Areas on the apron away from the gasoline pump islands used for parking or vehicle storage shall be illuminated in accordance with the requirements for parking areas set forth elsewhere in this section. If no gasoline pumps are provided, the entire apron shall be treated as a parking area.
(b) Areas around the pump islands and under canopies shall be illuminated so that the minimum horizontal illuminance at grade level is at least 10 foot-candle and no more than 20 foot-candles. The uniformity ration (ratio of average to minimum illuminance) shall be no greater than 4:1.
(c) Light fixtures mounted on canopies shall be installed so that the lens cover is recessed or flush with the bottom surface (ceiling) of the canopy or shielded by the fixture or the edge of the canopy so that light is restrained to no more than 85 degrees from vertical.
(d) As an alternative (or supplement) to recessed ceiling lights, indirect lighting may be used where light is beamed upward and then reflected down from the underside of the canopy. In this case light fixtures must be shielded so that direct illumination is focused exclusively on the underside of the canopy.
(e) Lights shall not be mounted on the top or sides (fascias) of the canopy, and the sides (fascias) of the canopy shall not be illuminated.
(11) Lighting of Exterior Display/Sales Areas. Lighting levels on exterior display/sales areas shall be adequate to facilitate the activities taking place in such locations. Lighting of such areas shall not be used to attract attention to the businesses. Signs allowed under the appropriate section of these regulations shall be used for that purpose. The applicant shall designate areas to be considered display/sales areas and areas to be used as parking or passive vehicle storage areas. These uses shall comply with the following standards:
(a) Areas designated as parking or passive vehicle storage areas shall be illuminated in accordance with the requirements for parking areas suggested elsewhere in this section.
(b) Areas designated as exterior display/sales areas shall be illuminated so that the average horizontal illuminance at grade level is no more than 5.0 foot-candles. The uniformity ration (ratio of average to minimum illuminance) shall be no greater than 4:1. The average and minimum shall be computed for only that area designated as exterior display/sales area.
(c) Light fixtures shall include cut-off fixtures, and shall be located, mounted, aimed, and shielded so that direct light is not cast onto adjacent streets or properties.
(12) Lighting of Outdoor Performance Facilities. Outdoor nighttime performance events (concerts, athletic contests, etc.) have unique lighting needs. Illumination levels vary, depending on the nature of the event. The regulations in this section are intended to allow adequate lighting for such events while minimizing skyglow, reducing glare and unwanted illumination of surrounding streets and properties, and reducing energy consumption. These uses shall comply with the following standards:
(a) Design Plan: A lighting design plan shall be submitted which shows in detail the proposed lighting installation. The design plan shall include a discussion of the lighting requirements of various areas and how those requirements will be met.
(b) Dual System: The main lighting of the event (spotlighting or floodlighting, etc.) shall be turned off no more than 60 minutes after the end of the event. A low level lighting system shall be installed to facilitate patrons leaving the facility, cleanup, nighttime maintenance, etc. The low level lighting system shall provide an average horizontal illumination level, at grade level, of no more than 3.0 foot-candles with a uniformity ration (average to minimum) not exceeding 4:1.
(c) Primary Playing Areas: Where playing fields or other special activity areas are to be illuminated, lighting fixtures shall be specified, mounted, and aimed so that their beams fall within the primary playing area and immediate surroundings, and so that no direct illumination is directed off the site.
(d) Parking Areas: Lighting for parking areas shall comply with EC 9.6725(9).
(e) Pedestrian/Bikepath Areas: Lighting for pedestrian and bike pathways shall comply with EC 9.6725(8)(b).
(13) Lighting of Building Facades and Landscaping. With the exception of structures having exceptional symbolic or historic significance in the community, exterior building facades shall not be illuminated for the primary purpose of highlighting the building. When buildings having symbolic or historic significance are to be illuminated primarily for highlighting the building, a design for the illumination shall be approved by the planning and development director and the following provisions shall be met:
(a) The maximum illumination on any vertical surface or angular roof surface shall not exceed 5.0 foot-candles.
(b) Lighting fixtures shall be carefully located, aimed, and shielded so that light is directed only onto the building facade. Lighting fixtures shall not be directed toward adjacent streets or roads.
(c) Lighting fixtures mounted on the building and designed to “wash” the facade with light are preferred.
(d) To the extent practicable, lighting fixtures shall be directed downward (i.e. below the horizontal) rather than upward.
(e) When landscaping is to be illuminated, the planning and development director shall first approve a landscape lighting plan that presents the purpose and objective of the lighting, shows the location of all lighting fixtures and what landscaping each is to illuminate, and demonstrates that the installation will not generate excessive light levels, cause glare, or direct light beyond the landscaping into the night sky.