New arena lighting could save Huron-Kinloss big bucks


By Barb McKay


New energy efficient lighting at the Ripley arena won’t be cheap to install, but it will save the township thousands of dollars in annual energy costs, says Huron-Kinloss’ facilities and recreation director.


Mike Fair asked Huron-Kinloss council last Monday to give pre-budget approval to a project to replace ice surfacing lighting in the Ripley arena. The project was supposed to have been deferred until 2013 because it exceeded the budget. Fair said since that time, Eco-Shift Power, the only tender applicant to submit a proposal for a 400-watt bulb system, has provided a new proposal and has offered to postpone payment until January 2013. He said the Cambridge-based company is eager to take on the project.


“They’ve never done recreational lighting in Ontario,” he said. “They are very, very keen to get a project in place so they have a showpiece.”


The total cost of the project will be $27,387.81, including tax. Fair said a significant chunk of the cost – roughly $10,000 – will be to remove the old 600-volt wiring.


“It wouldn’t matter what fixture we went with, we’d still have to rewire,” he said.


The new fixture uses energy-efficient 400-watt bulbs, which provide the same light as 1,000-watt bulbs.

The lights can be dimmed down to 200 watts. Fair said he figures the township will save at least $2,000 to $3,000 each year in energy costs.


Council agreed to go ahead with the project.


“If we’re saving money immediately, it’s money well spent,” said councillor Carl Sloetjes.


Sloetjes said the township should take a look at the old wiring that is coming out of the arena to see if there is any value to it. Fair said staff would look into it.


The new lighting is expected to be installed in time for the Ripley Fall Fair at the end of September.