Options sought to replace bridge lights
Thursday, Apr 20, 2017 06:00 am
The Town of Banff is looking into options to replace vandalized lighting on the pedestrian bridge over the Bow River.
Vandals destroyed LED strip lighting on the east handrail of the pedestrian bridge last October and administration has been working with a local electrical contractor on options and costs to replace the lights.
In the meantime, remaining lights have been dimmed to their lowest setting following continuing concerns raised by nearby residents about lighting levels on the bridge throughout the night.
“Based on some of the feedback we’ve received over the last while, the pedestrian bridge is currently dimmed to the lowest it can be,” said Mayor Karen Sorensen. “We’re going to hold it at that until we decide what to do with the lights.”
Residents of Buffalo Street have complained about the lighting levels on the bridge, as well as late-night noise.
The YWCA and Banff RCMP detachment, on the other hand, have voiced support for lighting the pedestrian bridge at night to enhance the safety of pedestrians and cyclists, and deter crime.
Banff’s recently approved trails lighting policy outlines where lighting could be considered, as well as the type of lights and how bright they can be. There is currently no budget for any projects, but the pedestrian bridge is the exception.
Insurance will cover replacement of the vandalized lights; however, if the Town chooses to change the lighting type or lighting housing, there may be additional capital costs.
“That insurance claim will generate some revenue and that revenue will be used to rectify the lighting on the bridge,” said Town Manager Robert Earl.
The new policy recommends an average maintained horizontal light level intensity of one to 1.5 lux. In key locations such as bridges, tunnels, trailheads and trail intersections it can reach five lux.
As for the pedestrian bridge, at the current dimmed setting, and with lighting only on the west handrail of the bridge, the average light level intensity across the width of the entire bridge is 6.5 lux.
If the same LED strip lighting currently under the west handrail is replaced under the east handrail, the average lighting intensity would be around 11.5 lux, or slightly higher.