Evanston to save $1 million in Sherman Plaza garage light makeover

Jia You, Assistant City Editor

Work began Monday to upgrade lighting at the Sherman Plaza parking garage, a project that will save Evanston more than $1 million in electricity costs over the next 11 years, according to a city news release.

Workers will replace 900 metal halide light fixtures with induction canopy lighting at the garage, 821 Davis St. Induction canopy light fixtures use only a fifth of the electricity that halide light fixtures use, amounting to 170 watts in electricity saving per fixture, or more than 1 million kilowatt-hours of annual electricity savings. This will save the city about $100,000 in electricity cost annually, adding up to more than $1 million during the new light fixtures’ expected 11-year lifetime.

Under the State of Illinois’ Public Sector Energy Efficiency Program, the state’s department of commerce and economic opportunity will rebate the city for the cost of the project, valued at approximately $45,000. The program typically caps the rebate at 75 percent of total project cost. If Evanston completes its project before Feb. 14, however, the department could reimburse the city for the total cost of the project under a “Sweet Deal” incentive, which aims to motivate local governments to complete projects early.

Wheaton-based company Electrical Resource Management, Inc., is installing the lighting upgrades. The work is expected to last four weeks.

— Jia You