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Innovation

The new trend that’s lighting up awards season in transportation

Light emitting diode (LED) lighting is garnering major industry attention – and we’re shining the light on its green benefits.

Pantone called it the color of the year – that’s how big of a deal it is. Yet, as Kermit the Frog once crooned, “it’s not easy being green.”

From manufacturing to water, industries are constantly challenged to become greener, or more sustainable, in their work.

As the world’s first professional services firm to receive the World Environment Center Gold Medal Award for International Corporate Achievement in Sustainable Development, thinking and acting sustainably is something we’re pretty good at.

Just consider how CH2M is leading the development of some of the most sustainable projects in today’s transportation industry.

Our A-one+ joint venture team, supporting our Highways England client, worked in collaboration with lighting specialists to adapt innovative light emitting diode (LED) lighting to work on overhead signage on the strategic road network across the M18, M180 and M621 motorways in Yorkshire and Humberside.

Replacing conventional gantry lighting with the newly-developed LED Sculp Gantry Lighting provides bright, effective illumination to highway road signs, low maintenance and long-life durability. A national first, the 24 overhead signs given the green light to go LED provided £889,600 of whole life cost efficiency savings and £10,000 annual energy efficiency savings.

At the same time conversion of standard column lighting on the M62 motorway is already delivering major sustainability benefits, including:

  • £889,600 of whole life cost efficiency savings and £10,000 annual energy efficiency savings.
  • 53-percent reduction in annual energy consumption, enough electricity to power to run every household in Normanton, Wakefield for 2 weeks – and that’s over 20,000 people.
  • 613 tonnes annual carbon reduction, the same amount used to generate 389,000 loads of laundry.

And not to mention a better experience for motorists, reduced safety concerns for maintenance workers performing at heights and less overall maintenance visits.

The new highway lighting best practice even earned the A-one+ team the prestigious CIHT/Ringway Innovation Award at the 12th annual Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation Awards ceremony in 2017; and Small Project of the Year at the 2017 Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (Yorkshire & the Humber) Awards.

Across the pond in the United States, CH2M’s top-flight aviation team implemented similar LED lighting at John Glenn Columbus International Airport (CMH) in Columbus, Ohio. Our Runway 10R-28L project became the first runway in the U.S. to employ high-intensity LED runway edge lights – achieving an expected 60 percent power usage reduction.

Like for Highways England, this solution reduced the CMH’s runway light maintenance costs —incandescent lights have an annual lamp replacement, while LED lights have a ten-year life expectancy.

The LED runway, and a host of other sustainable solutions applied on the project helped CMH’s new runway become the first-ever airfield project to win the Airports Council International North America Environmental Achievement Award. In addition to this first-of-its-kind award, the project received the Best Project acknowledgement by the 2014 Illuminating Engineering Society Aviation Lighting Committee.

Interested in learning more about how CH2M drives efficiency using the latest technologies? Visit https://www.ch2m.com/tech-this-out (#TechThisOut).

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