By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
London City Schools has sought a replacement solution for stadium lighting at the high school ever since one of the original light poles snapped on April 28, 2011.
The incident happened five months after the pole’s 10-year warranty expired. The school district has been in negotiations with Valmont, the pole manufacturer, ever since. Because Valmont is not offering a full replacement, the district has been looking into alternative solutions.
Last week, MSA Sport and KLH Engineers, consultants out of Columbus, presented school leaders with two options.
One option is to install new metal poles from Valmont, reuse existing lights and supports, and replace bulbs. The poles would replace wood light poles put up as a temporary fix after the other metal poles were taken down as a safety precaution following the 2011 incident.
The cost of this option is approximately $154,000. It includes design work, four new poles, installation, relamping, new fixtures where needed, demolition of the wood poles, removal of the old metal poles and demolition of the concrete foundations. The new poles would be buried directly into a 15-foot deep shaft, rather into concrete foundations. Valmont would provide a one-year manufacturer’s warranty on the poles.
The other option is to install a completely new system using equipment from a different manufacturer, Musco. The total estimated cost would be $215,400. Musco offers a 25-year warranty on the entire system.
Donna Miller of KLH Engineers said her company has worked on numerous projects where Musco lighting was installed, from high school to collegiate applications. She vouched for the company, saying their product is “top of the line.”
School board member Curtis Brooks asked how Musco’s light coverage compares to Valmont’s. Miller said tests would be needed to answer that question, but that she believes Musco would be “a little better because the fixtures are more directional.”
The turn-around time on installation of the new Musco system would be about five months, Miller said.
“We’d like to have new lights up by this coming football season,” said Marvin Homan, board president.
Attorneys involved with the negotiations with Valmont said the school district needs to make a decision regarding the Valmont option by Jan. 31. To allow the district time to research other options, negotiatiors have already granted the district two or three extensions, said Superintendent Tom Ben.
There is no deadline for a decision on the Musco full replacement option.
Tony Scally of MSA Sport noted that Musco would not quote a price for supplying poles only to go with the existing masts and fixtures.
“Musco was uncomfortable with quoting due to all of the unknowns,” he said, referring to information they’d need regarding structural foundations, soil conditions, fixture weights and more.
“However, we are in the process of obtaining quotes from other lighting manufacturers to provide an additional cost estimate for a new complete lighting system,” Scally said.