In an effort to ensure a safer campus, Facility Services and Student Government are collaborating to improve exterior lighting on campus.
Facility Services works systematically to address lighting issues where needed, said Jim Mayne, associate director of utility services for Facility Services. Two issues are live oaks making campus appear darker and lights burning out.
Mayne said streetlights above live oak trees fail to illuminate their surrounding area effectively. Trimming the tree or lowering the light can correct this issue.
Lights that have gone out are simpler to deal with, requiring a standard replacement, Mayne said.
Many of these problems are discovered through a lighting survey done in collaboration with SG, said Tammy Millican, assistant director of Facility Services. Held twice a year, the survey consists of walks through campus at night to spot dark areas and needed repairs.
Outside of these surveys, maintenance of exterior lighting is handled on a “case-by-case” basis, Mayne said. When a student or faculty member notifies Facility Services of an area they feel needs attention, workers are sent to determine what needs to be done, if anything.
Millican said areas are also looked at when crime occurs.
“If there is ever an incident, we’ll take a look at where the incident took place,” Millican said.
Mayne said it is important to realize the problems with lighting are location and effect, not the amount of lights. The key to making a safer campus is to illuminate paths from parking areas to buildings.
“We cannot light the entire campus. It is not realistic and wouldn’t help the situation,” Mayne said.
LED lighting serves as the most effective way to accomplish safe lighting, Mayne said. Beyond being 40 to 50 percent more energy efficient, LED bulbs illuminate more area.
The LED-illuminated Barnes and Noble courtyard could be the start of a “campus standard for lighting,” said John Woodard, SG president.
Woodard said SG will continue to work with Facility Services, hoping for more LED bulbs around campus.
Capt. Cory Lalonde, LSU Police Department spokesman, acknowledged there are areas on campus that “could be better-lit” and said students and faculty should follow well-lit areas on campus at night.