Lighting the Greenbelt: New solar light installed

The Green River Greenbelt Task Force, Sweetwater School District No. 2 Recreation District, Infinity Power and Controls, Rocky Mountain Power and the City of Green River Parks and Recreation Department have partnered to address lighting concerns on areas of Green River's Greenbelt.

In the 2021 Greenbelt Master Plan survey, the citizens of Green River expressed a need for lighting areas of the Greenbelt including the path and specific parking areas to improve safety and accessibility. In 2023, the Greenbelt Task Force (GBTF) wrote a $10,000 grant to the Sweetwater School District No. 2 Recreation District to begin a pilot lighting project. With money in hand, the GBTF sought out donors with expertise and abilities to stretch the initial grant while considering wildlife issues and light pollution.

Bruce Pivic with Infinity Power and Control was the first to come forward. He was aware of a 4000W solar light that is programable to shine from 20% to 100% of its capacity on a continual basis. It can also be set to activate a brighter light with motion sensors. The team decided to install one light in a dark location and evaluate its functionality through the winter months. Infinity Power and Controls (Infinity) donated the light and a pole to attach it to. Rocky Mountain Power (RMP) installed the light pole, with Infinity installing and setting up the light's function. The light is located near the small pavilion on the U.P. Loop Trail.

The installed light's performance has exceeded our expectations. Even with our short winter days, the solar panel is able to store enough power to last through the long winter's nights. The light is currently set at 20% capacity until something trips the sensor which results in full power. At 20%, one does not notice the light until you are close to the pole while still providing enough light for safe footing. We have learned that we need to locate the light closer to the trail in order for the sensor to be functional.

Currently the team is making decisions as to location of lights while pursing more donations. RMP and D.J. Glass have donated poles to the project. Infinity has committed to the installing lights to the poles. Other individuals and organizations are working with the GBTF to donate to this project as well. When the GBTF wrote the grant, they didn't know how many lights could be installed. It was a pilot project. While writing the grant, estimates ranged from three to 10 lights. This summer, it is possible 30 lights can be installed. This is truly a community project.

Eighty-five percent of all the projects, past, present and future regarding the Green Belt are made possible through private donations, grants and volunteer programs such as these. Any individual, of corporate entity, wishing to contribute in any way may do so by contacting John Freeman via email at freeman@wyoming.com or visiting the web page https://www.grgb.org.

For more information, contact Tom Wilson (307) 870-8478 or John Freeman (307) 871-0064.

 

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