Come See Us at the CAI Spring Showcase & Trade Show

Come see us at the 2011 CAI Spring Showcase & Trade Show – Friday April 29th from 7 am to 4 pm (Booth # 104) at the Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum – 7711 E. Academy Blvd. in Denver. The theme of this year’s event is Traveling Through Time with Your HOA.

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives (OLP) of Colorado will be exhibiting the latest in ceramic metal halide, LED, and induction fluorescent lamp/fixture technology for a wide range of typical HOA lighting applications including area lighting (street, park, walkway); signage/monument lighting; and stairwell/building lighting.

The new induction fluorescent technology offers increased performance life (up to 100,000 hours) with dramatically lower operational (up to 50-percent energy savings) and maintenance costs. Further, it offers a vast improvement over High-Intensity Discharge (HID) fixtures with respect to nighttime visibility and color rendering.

One of the new programs that OLP of Colorado is offering is a Free Energy Savings Assessment – so that HOA’s and building owners can assess retrofit and replacement payback periods for different lamp technologies. So if you are involved with a community or an HOA, please plan to stop by and see us.

From day to night – lighting done right

One of the things we offer is a free nighttime demonstration so that you actually get to see what a particular lighting design will look like for your home and property – prior to an installation.  That eliminates all of the guesswork and surprises – and you will know exactly how much you will have to invest to achieve that desired lighting effect.

Most of our typical lighting installations in Colorado range in price between $3,500 and $6,500. Not surprisingly, most homeowners have no idea how many lights they may need or want – or what their investment range might be until we do the evening lighting demonstration.  And that’s perfectly OK because we do not want you to purchase a lighting system sight unseen.

Additionally, we do our nighttime demonstration for these other reasons:

  • It is your house, not our’s – and you know best how you would like to have your house and property illuminated in the evening.
  • Exact placement of the fixtures can be determined in order to safely light steps and other hazards, and to effectively light architectural features.
  • We can show you several different lighting options that you may not have considered previously.
  • The evening lighting demonstration is an event that your entire family can participate in and provide input to the lighting design.

Here is what you will see.

 

Outdoor lighting Colorado before and after
Outdoor lighting Colorado before and after

Garden Lighting Looks Great 365 Days a Year

Garden path light with melting snow

With only 56 days until the first day of spring, I thought that it was worth mentioning that garden lighting looks great regardless of the season of the year. Most homeowners are afraid that garden lighting will make their yards look ugly during the non-growing seasons – but nothing can be further from the truth. Having grown up in Pennsylvania, I always loved seeing the deciduous trees and shrubs in winter because of the ever-changing beauty of both the branch structures and bark textures. The interplay of light and shadows that can be created by garden lighting is truly magnificent after a new snowfall, in the spring with flowering trees and shrubs, in the summer with trees and shrubs under full-leaf , and of course in the fall with multi-color leaves. Once the landscaping and the lighting have been installed, mother nature provides the ever-changing and exciting palette of colors and hues for a homeowner’s enjoyment.

Colorado Outdoor Lighting Path Light

Path Light after a Snow Storm

Garden lighting can be used to illuminate a pathway to reach a gazebo, a fire pit, or patio – or be used to illuminate a prized flower bed with colorful annual and/or perennial flowers. Sometimes a focal point of garden lighting will be a water feature, koi pond, or a piece of sculpture. And in Colorado, garden lighting helps to provide safety and security after dark for both young children and pets especially with the prevalence of coyotes, mountain lions, and bears.

Path Light – Summertime

With any good lighting design, the important thing is to not flood the area with light but to carefully highlight only the parts of the garden that are interesting aesthetically or are needed for safety – pathways, steps, etc. The lighting designer is basically an artist who is “painting” with light – and he or she with the homeowner’s input can choose to include anything on the blank lighting “canvas” in order to complete a compelling masterpiece that will be enjoyed for many years to come.

Colorado Outdoor Path Lighting
Garden lighting for gazebo, rock wall and trees.

In Colorado, homeowners love their rocks – character moss rocks, rock walls, massive red rock outcroppings, and huge granite boulders in the mountains. Hey – they don’t call this the Rocky Mountains for no good reason! Outdoor Lighting Perspectives (OLP) of Colorado has illuminated rocks and boulders of all sizes – and it helps to add three-dimensionality and interest to any garden lighting design.

What Is the Best Lighting Design for Outdoor Steps?

     The answer to that and just about any other lighting design question is that it just depends. While that answer may not be satisfying to most homeowners, it’s the best answer that we can provide until we’ve fully evaluated the site and have fully understood how the homeowner intends to use the space after dark.

Typical Recessed Step Light

     Most homeowners immediately think that the commonly used step lights shown at left are the easiest and best way to illuminate the stairs leading to their deck or raised patio. With any good lighting design, however, the final design should be based on the bulb itself and resulting lighting effect. In other words, the fixture selection and type should actually come last in the design process.
     These lighting fixtures are relatively easy to install on a wood or Trex deck – either during or after construction. However, if the lights need to be installed in poured concrete steps, then a lot of pre-planning needs to be done before the new steps go in.
     During the last twelve years we have been in business, Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado has only installed a handful of recessed step lights. The primary reason for that is because there is a much better way to proper illuminate the steps for after-dark safety – and that design effect is commonly called downlighting or sconce lighting.

Entrance to Property Requiring Proper Lighting for Steps

     We recently completed a lighting installation at a home built in the 1920s near the Governors Mansion in Denver. The property is accessed from the public sidewalk through a large wrought iron gate. To reach the upper terrace and front entrance to the home, you can access the steps immediately to the left or right side of the gate. With an existing and historical home with stone and concrete work quickly approaching one-hundred years old, the last thing you would want to even consider would be recessed step lighting. The good news is that installing these  copper BB08 sconce lights is much easier and they provide much better lighting as well. A close up of the completed installation is shown below.

Close Up of Completed Sconce Light Installation

     That being said, there have been a few occasions where recessed step lighting was our only option for providing any lighting to steps. In those situations, the steps from side to side were over ten feet wide, with no handrails or any other possible location to mount any sconce lights. In that situation, we made sure that we installed at least three step lights on each riser so that the steps could be safely illuminated. 

     The last photo shows the lighting effect of these copper BB08 sconce lights (made in the USA at our factory in Nashville) on a deck with many steps among the pines.

Deck Lighting and Step Lighting Among the Pines

No Street Lights? We Can Help

OLP Exhibit at HBA Home & Garden Show

We just finished a three-day HBA Home and Garden Show in Colorado Springs last weekend. The low voltage LED landscape lighting fixtures were a big hit at the show. Many visitors to our exhibit commented that the fixtures were beautifully crafted and were so bright and white that they could not possibly be LEDs!

There seemed to be a lot more interest at this year’s show due to the financial difficulties being experienced by the city of Colorado Springs, not unlike many state and municipal governments nationwide. You might wonder what budgetary cutbacks have to do with landscape and architectural lighting, but the fact of the matter is that the city has literally turned off one-third to one-half of the streetlights throughout the area.

That has effectively created vast expanses of “dark and scary” areas throughout the metro area. Some of our existing customers have lighting to deter vandalism and others have lighting so that they can see the neighborhood bear or mountain lion before letting their dog out after dark.

The good news is that our energy efficient lighting systems can provide lighting for safety and security to those homeowners who no longer have the use of their neighborhood streetlight.

2010 HBA Home and Garden Show

Come visit us at the 2010 HBA Home & Garden Show – March 5th through the 7th at the Phil Long Expo Center – 1515 Auto Mall Loop in Colorado Springs. We’re located in Booth #602.

The show hours on Friday are from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m., on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

We’ll have residential and commercial fixtures on display, as well as our new and innovative low voltage LED landscaping lights that won a Hot Products award from 9News at the Colorado Garden and Home Show.

We look forward to seeing you at the show!

Safe and Secure Entry

One of the lighting jobs we completed last week included additional work with our Lighting Control Automation™ (LCA) system. This particular lighting scenario is called Safe/Secure Entry.

This lighting control can be set up in a number of ways to give homeowners additional security when they arrive home after dark. For example, interior lights can be triggered to turn on as soon as the garage door opens after dark – but not during the daytime. Key fobs can also provide manual controls to a homeowner when approaching their home after dark.

In the following video by Winston Edwards (Outdoor Lighting Perspectives corporate factory in Nashville), the use of a key fob remote that turns on the driveway and interior lights after pulling into a standalone garage is demonstrated.

I hope that you enjoyed the LCA demonstration – I’ll be posting additonal videos in the near future.