Park and Rec discusses energy use at Jay C. Hormel Nature Center

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 9, 2003

The Parks and Recreation board members received suggestions Wednesday on how to improve energy use at the J.C. Hormel Nature Center.

The energy audit done by Austin utilities on Nov. 20, 2002, included a walk-though of the Nature Center and the Maintenance Shop buildings, an evaluation of the condition of the present systems and impact of possible improvements.

Kelly Lady, energy service consultant, presented suggestions on lighting replacements on upper and lower areas of the center. The reports stated that all areas are more than adequately lighted.

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Suggestion on the lighting included going from (130) T12 Fluorescent to an T8 fluorescent and reducing 75 watts spots to 23-55 watts and changing fluorescent exit sings to LED exit signs.

"Lighting is always the easiest way to replace and improve," Lady said.

With changes, the estimated annual energy and cost savings at the Nature Center of $1,500 for the center and $200 for the maintenance shop.

Lady said Austin Utilities is required to provide a number of conservation programs through rebates.

In other business the board decided to set a $25 rental fee with a minimum of two hours for the Cabin at the center and $10 for security to open and lock up the facility.

The board will meet on at 5:15 p.m. Feb. 5 at the Austin Parks, Recreation & Forestry Office.

Roxana Orellana can be reached at 434-2214 or by e-mail at