Celebrating the Past with Local LED Lighting Technology

Established in 1890, Shelton's past has long been intertwined with logging and the railroads that sprung up with it.

“Tollie” The Shay, a locomotive built in 1924, rests next to the post office, anchoring the historic town center; antique shops and small businesses line Railroad Avenue. In the evening, the decorative pedestal and streetlights that run along the busy street give off a warm glow – the warm glow of LED.

Railroad Avenue’s ornamental streetlights installed in the mid to late 1990s and maintained by Mason PUD 3 required a great deal of maintenance. Knowing the ballasts on the 20 year-old fixtures would need changing again soon, Justin Holzgrove, Engineering Services & Community Relations Manager at Mason PUD 3, was looking for an LED solution that would eliminate the constant upkeep required by HPS lights, yet still deliver the warm look that residents and visitors had come to expect.

Railroad Ave, Shelton, WA. Home of Mason County PUD 3

“The people at Evluma have always been very responsive and a pleasure to work with.”

The team at Mason PUD 3 tested several different solutions including corncobs and downlights. “Anything less than a 10-year warranty was a non-starter for us. Some didn’t fit our fixtures, one was too tall and downlights weren’t appropriate for our omnidirectional globes,” stated Justin. Mason PUD 3 also obtained a sample OmniMax by Evluma. The OmniMax fit their fixture, met their pre-requisite of a 10-year warranty and came in a 2000K color temperature. “The goal was to keep that gaslight look for the downtown corridor. The color of the 3000K OmniMax was more ‘yellow’ than bright. It didn’t preserve the soft glow that suggests a small-town charm.” Having worked with Evluma since 2014 when Mason PUD 3 adopted the AreaMax LED Street Lights as their light standard for residential lighting, their choice was made. “The people at Evluma have always been very responsive and a pleasure to work with.”

Retrofitted with the Evluma OmniMax

A total of 63 fixtures were retrofitted with the Evluma OmniMax. The 70W HPS bulbs in the decorative pedestal lights were replaced with 70W LED OmniMax. The 200W HPS bulbs in the teardrop roadway lights were also replaced with 70W LED OmniMax. “With the ballast calculated in the 200W HPS lights we were pulling approximately 240W. The 70W HPS lights were closer to 75W,” stated Holzgrove. All the lights run on two separate circuits with a single photocontrol for each. “The lighting design along Railroad Ave pairs an overhead street light on a decorative 33’ pole opposite a shorter 15’ decorative pedestrian light. While we are seeing slightly less light output from the streetlight, we are getting more output from the pedestrian lights since we remained at 70 watts, instead of selecting the 40 watt OmniMax. Altogether, we are achieving a similar amount of illumination on the streets and sidewalks as we were with the HPS. The OmniMax gives us the same performance, but now with energy and maintenance savings.”

The lights converted from 200W to 70W count towards Washington Initiative 937, the Energy Independence Act (2006), that requires utilities undertake all cost-effective energy conservation. The OmniMax LED retrofit lamp comes in multiple color temperatures from 5000K for a bright white, contemporary look, to the 2000K ‘gaslight’ CCT that Mason PUD 3 ultimately chose for their downtown.

OmniMax are also compatible with ConnectLED, a Bluetooth Low Energy wireless app for dimming and quick disconnects. Mason PUD 3 will likely not use the app for OmniMax in downtown Shelton, but have this as an extra tool for working with the 1,500+ Evluma AreaMax they have installed in other areas of Mason County.

The Railroad Avenue retrofit project was one of the last performed by long-time Mason PUD 3 lineman John Donovan right before he retired. “John has done a lot of maintenance on those ornamental lights replacing ballasts and replacing bulbs and I think for him to see a long-term solution in place was probably rewarding,” stated Holzgrove.