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Lighting critical to safety of parking lots


   

Ron Gibbons Ron Gibbons

NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION, Oct. 4, 2012 – Prince William County commuters have 553 new spaces to park in at the new Telegraph Road Park and Ride Facility, and the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute has a research venue for new lighting technologies.

Transportation institute researchers are assessing new LED lighting technology in a project sponsored by the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and the Virginia Center for Transportation Innovation and Research.  "This new technology has the potential to reduce the energy usage in the parking lot by 50 percent while improving visibility and user comfort," said Ron Gibbons, director of the Center for Infrastructure Safety Systems at the transportation institute.

Lighting fixtures from five different manufacturers are being evaluated in comparison to standard lighting products. The institute will test the lighting quarterly for the next two years to assess performance, light level, weathering, and lifetime of the luminaires.

The new parking lot is near the intersection of Telegraph Road and Caton Hill Road. The location complements the nearby Horner Road Commuter, which fills early each day.

Future improvements will include widening Telegraph Road from two to four lanes with turn lanes at the intersections and at the entrance to the Park and Ride facility. It will also include a pedestrian sidewalk and a shared-use trail.

The park and ride project was a joint venture with funding from VDOT, county, and private funds. The site will ultimately provide 729 parking spaces, bicycle rack and lockers, site lighting, bus shelters, and a separate bus pick up lane.

The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute conducts research to save lives, time, money, and protect the environment. One of the seven university-level research institutes created by Virginia Tech to answer national challenges, the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute continually advances transportation through innovation and has impacted public policy on the national and international level.

Read the Prince William County news release and photos.

Written by Susan Trulove.