On the Parkland Hospital project, Prism’s design-assist team worked with the owner to design an under-cabinet lighting system for the nursing stations. Although not a very costly item, all the lights added up in a facility as large as this hospital. By chance, the chief of nurses gave a tour, and our group participated in the group tour. We then learned that the nurses do not use under cabinet lighting, and computer monitors would block the system, thereby rendering the cost for such a system a complete waste. We immediately removed that system from our budget and lowered our overall price by $150,000 – all without a time-consuming change order.

Another example of both a failure and a success story is that Prism Electric met with the owners and design team to receive input on the lighting design goals. Energy efficiency and longevity ranked very high on their list of requirements. Also, numerous areas existed where the philanthropy of individuals was to be noted with specialty lighting. Given this information, Prism Electric set a budget of $11,250,000 for the lighting of this 2.25 million-square-foot facility.

Operating without the owner’s input, the lighting designer produced drawings for the design and the fixture choices and quantities priced out at $13,500,000, with energy consumption 10% below design standard. The Prism team had a $2.25 million problem to solve. Using our knowledge of light fixtures, emphasizing LED and lighting controls technology, and calling on our key contacts in the industry, we made recommendations on equipment and fixtures that would maintain the design intent while reducing the purchase cost and energy consumption. The result was a fixture purchase of $11,100,000 and energy consumption 25% below design standard. Our preconstruction efforts saved $2.4 million in initial cost and will amount to an approximate savings of $350,000 per year in energy consumption.