This week Salt Lake City began installing a new light-emitting diode (LED) system at Smith's Ballpark to enhance the viewing experience for players and fans.
Salt Lake City owns the stadium and is investing $630,000 to replace 342 obsolete metal halide lamps with 168 new LED bulbs. This change will reduce energy consumption and eliminate lighting maintenance costs.
"Salt Lake City will see our beautiful baseball stadium in a whole new light" said Mayor Jackie Biskupski. "These upgrades not only save costs and reduce energy but provide an even greater sports experience for families and fans."
The current system was installed 25 years ago and had exceeded its original lifespan causing lights to suddenly turn off in the middle of games. The new lights minimize glare and noise, illuminate brighter than the old lamps and require no time to warm up due to their efficiency.
"It's a game changer," said Phong Nguyen, Energy Management Coordinator with the City's Department of Public Services. "We're not only improving the overall stadium experience, but we're also reducing energy consumption by 65 percent while saving money on maintenance thanks to its 25-year warranty."
Salt Lake Bees President Marc Amicone said upgrades like this have been implemented at several baseball stadiums across the country and are becoming the standard in lighting.
"We'll be able to brighten the field faster and more directionally, which will help reduce light pollution," said Amicone. "This new system even has special effects so we can enhance the fan experience when celebrating home runs or when the Bees win."
"We are grateful for the great partnership we have with Salt Lake City, which allows us to keep the ballpark a premier facility in Minor League Baseball and a vital part of our community."
Crews with Cache Valley Electric and Wagstaff Crane are expected to complete their activities this week before the 2018 baseball season begins. The University of Utah team, which uses the ballpark, is scheduled to play its home opener on March 23. The opener for the Bees is set for April 5.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.