Always on the cutting-edge of sustainability, the San Diego Convention Center (SDCC) made industry history once again when it became the first convention center in the nation to go completely florescent in its 525,701 square foot (sf) exhibit hall. The new lighting fixtures will reduce energy consumption by approximately 44 percent in our environmentally-friendly facility.
"We were looking for a lighting system that would not only be more energy efficient and environmentally friendly, but would also meet the high-quality standards that our exhibitors have come to expect from our facility," says SDCC General Manager Brad Gessner. "Our clients have already noticed a difference in the color quality, brightness and ease of turning on and off our lights in our exhibit halls that we didn't have with our old HID (high intensity discharge) system."
The new florescent lighting was installed in just 9 days between shows in December 2010. It was successfully completed only hours before one of SDCC's largest annual events moved in, the San Diego International Auto Show (Auto Show).
"With the upswing in the auto industry, manufacturers returned to the auto show floor with bigger and bolder displays in an effort to showcase their new products. The placement of the new Convention Center lighting couldn't have come at a better time to enhance those exhibits and upgrade the auto show experience for our patrons," says Amy Foley, director of marketing/media relations for the Auto Show. This year attendance increased by 4 percent at the Auto Show with 100,000 plus attendees taking part in the four-day event.
In our exhibit hall, each florescent light panel consisting of 6 florescent (T-5) show lamps is now controlled by a state-of-the-art wireless control system. Each individual lighting fixture can be immediately turned on, turned off or dimmed according to client/exhibitor requirements.
The new fixtures operate almost 7 times cooler than the old HID lighting system and have already significantly lowered the cooling needs and background noise in our exhibit halls. The amount of mercury in our exhibit halls were reduced by 90 percent with the installation of florescent lights. And the SDCC is expected to save nearly 1.3 million kWh in electricity per year with the new system.