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Retail Brookhart's Building Center

Home supply center upgrades
image with prismatic lighting

Brookharts Building Center, an Ace Hardware affiliate, caters to a more upscale audience than many home center stores. Located north of Colorado Springs, the retail hardware/building supply center is near some of Colorado's most desirable residential communities and ranches, and targets both consumers and contractors.

Before the new 26,000-square-foot facility was constructed, the design called for the same industrial-type fluorescent lighting system that had been used in the six other stores that comprise the Colorado chain. Lighting system specifier, Vern Plant, president, Plant Engineering Consultants, Colorado Springs, however, urged the chain owner to utilize a high intensity discharge (HID) system—and specifically metal halide—as a means of saving energy and maintenance costs while upgrading the store's image.

The system installed is Holophane PrismGlo® Athena® fixtures with 400-watt metal halide lamps. Units are used in the 23,000-square-foot retail space, mounted at 16 feet and spaced 15 feet on center. The fixtures provide 60 percent downlight and 40 percent uplight to illuminate the open steel deck ceiling. The ceiling—including trusses and duct work—and walls are painted with a high reflectance white paint. The floor is finished light gray tile.

"Brookharts Lumber wanted to appeal to more affluent customers and liked the aesthetics of the glass fixtures. The challenge was how to justify the approximate $13,000 difference between the fluorescent system and the proposed metal halide fixtures. This included not only the additional cost of purchasing the HID system, but installation expenses. We were able to justify the difference through substantial energy savings and reduced maintenance since the HID system uses 60 percent fewer fixtures than a comparable fluorescent system," Plant said.

Holophane's Computer Aided Lighting Analysis (CALA) software was used to make point by point calculations and confirm lighting uniformity. The designed illumination level is 86 footcandles, which Plant confirmed has been achieved.

"We have excellent lighting uniformity within the store," he said. "The retail floor is bright and pleasant, but not glary. Customers are able to read the information on shelves and products; it's easy for them to find what they are looking for."

As an added benefit, the prismatic lighting has provided the store with significant curb appeal. Because the facility is located in a rural setting by itself near the interstate, it has to be illuminated enough to attract the attention of passersby.

"During the evening hours—and particularly in the winter—the lighting helps people know the store is open and ready for business," Plant described.

The luminaires are energized about 80 hours per week, and are manually switched from a control panel. Brookharts Lumber is open seven days a week.

The system has been successful enough to attract the attention of other ACE affiliates, which have expressed interest in using the PrismGlo fixtures in their facilities. The Brookharts Lumber chain is also considering upgrading the lighting at some of its existing stores.


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