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(A) Purpose. To require and set minimum standards for outdoor lighting to:
(1) Manage outdoor lighting so that its safety, security and economic and aesthetic benefits are maintained while minimizing dangerous glare, energy waste, light pollution and light trespass.
(2) Implement these principles of good lighting design by regulating the shielding, height, illumination levels, and other aspects of outdoor lighting so that residents may continue to enjoy the rural and residential character of St. Johns.
(1) (a) All uses of land or buildings within the city where there is interior or exterior lighting that creates a nuisance or hazard as viewed from outside, including, but not limited to, residential, commercial, industrial, public and private recreational/sports and institutional uses, and sign, billboard, architectural and landscape lighting. The following are regulated activities and shall be regulated by this chapter to the entirety of the city unless specifically exempted by this section:
(b) All zoning permits, subdivisions, site plans, and land development applications.
(2) The following are exempt from this chapter:
(a) Temporary seasonal decorative lighting associated with single-family dwellings is exempt from this chapter.
(b) Emergency lighting, as may be required by any public agency while engaged in the performance of their duties, or for illumination of the path of egress during an emergency, is exempt from the requirements of this chapter.
(c) The requirements of this chapter shall not apply to outdoor lighting installations operating before the effective date of this chapter, except for any lighting installation that creates a safety hazard as deemed by the city. Routine maintenance of these pre-existing outdoor lighting installations shall not have to comply with the requirements of this chapter.
(C) Definitions. For the purpose of this section the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.
(1) FOOTCANDLE. Unit of light density incident on a plane (assumed to be horizontal unless otherwise specified), and measurable with an illuminance meter, a.k.a. light meter.
(2) FULL CUTOFF. Attribute of a lighting fixture where no more than 10% of the lamp's intensity is emitted at or above an angle ten degree below that horizontal plane, at all lateral angles around the fixture.
(3) FULLY SHIELDED. Attribute of a lighting fixture provided with internal and/or external shields and louvers to prevent brightness from lamps, reflectors, refractors and lenses from causing glare at normal viewing angles.
(4) GLARE. Excessive brightness in the field of view that is sufficiently greater than the brightness to which the eyes are adapted, to cause annoyance or loss in visual performance and visibility, so as to jeopardize health, safety or welfare.
(5) ILLUMINANCE. Quantity of light, measured in footcandles.
(6) LIGHT TRESPASS. Glare emitted by a lighting fixture or installation, which is cast beyond the boundaries of the property on which the lighting installation is sited.
(7) LUMEN. As used in the context of this chapter, the light-output rating of a lamp (light bulb).
(D) Performance criteria.
(1) Fixtures shall be of a type and design appropriate to the lighting application and shall be aesthetically acceptable to the city.
(2) For the lighting of predominately horizontal surfaces such as, but not limited to, parking areas, roadways, vehicular and pedestrian passage areas, merchandising and storage areas, automotive-fuel dispensing facilities, automotive sales areas, loading docks, cul-de-sacs, active and passive recreational areas, building entrances, sidewalks, bicycle and pedestrian paths, and side entrances, fixtures shall be aimed straight down and shall meet full cutoff criteria.
(3) For the lighting of predominately non-horizontal surfaces such as, but not limited to, stairways, facades, landscaping, signs, billboards, fountains, displays and statuary, fixtures shall be fully shielded and shall be installed and aimed so as to not project their output into the windows of neighboring residences, adjacent uses, past the object being illuminated, skyward or onto a public roadway.
(E) Control of nuisance and disabling glare.
(1) All lighting shall be aimed, located, designated, fitted and maintained so as not to present a hazard to drivers or pedestrians by impairing their ability to safely traverse and so as not to create a nuisance by projecting or reflecting objectionable light onto a neighboring use or property.
(2) Directional fixtures such as floodlights and spotlights shall be so shielded, installed and aimed that they do not project their output into the windows or neighboring residences, adjacent uses, past the object being illuminated, skyward or onto a public roadway or pedestrian way. Floodlights, when building, pole or otherwise installed above grade on residential properties, except when motion-sensor actuated, shall not be aimed out more than 45 degrees from straight down. When a floodlight creates glare as viewed from an adjacent residential property, the floodlight shall be required to be re-aimed and/or fitted with a shielding device to block the view of the glare source from that property.
(3) "Barn lights", a.k.a. "dusk-to-dawn lights", when a source of glare as viewed from an adjacent property, shall not be permitted unless effectively shielded as viewed from that property.
(4) Lighting controlled by motion sensors/detectors. This type of lighting is to be used to deter vandalism and theft and shall be placed in locations where the sensors will not be tripped on a reoccurring basis and shall be installed and/or aimed so that they do not project their output at neighboring residences, adjacent uses, directly skyward or onto a roadway.
(5) Vegetation screens shall not be employed to serve as the primary means for controlling glare. Rather, glare control shall be achieved primarily through the use of such means as cutoff fixtures, shields and baffles, and appropriate application of fixture mounting height, wattage, aiming angle and fixture placement.
(6) The illumination projected from any use onto a residential use shall at no time exceed 0.1 footcandle, measured line-of-sight from any point on the receiving property.
(7) The illumination projected from any property onto a non-residential use shall at no time exceed 1.0 footcandle, measured line-of-sight from any point on the receiving property.
(8) Except as permitted for certain recreational lighting and permitted elsewhere in this division, fixtures shall not be mounted in excess of 20 feet above finished grade of the surface being illuminated. Mounting height shall be defined as the distance from the finished grade of the surface being illuminated to the optical center of the luminary. Where proposed parking lots of 100 or more contiguous spaces, the city may, at its discretion, based partially on mitigation of potential off-site impacts, allow a fixture mounting height not to exceed 25 feet above finished grade.
(9) Under canopy lighting for such applications as gas/service stations, hotel/theater marquees, fast-food/bank/drugstore drive-ups, shall be accomplished using flat-lens, full cutoff fixtures aimed straight down and shielded in such a manner that the lowest opaque edge of the fixture shall be below the light source at all lateral angles. The average illumination in the area directly below the canopy shall not exceed 20 footcandles and the maximum shall not exceed 30 footcandles.
(10) The illumination projecting from any interior lighting fixture may contribute to excessive glare. Windows, doors, skylights, and the like may be required to be shielded with anti-glare window tint or other window covering as approved by the city to reduce site illumination.
(1) Electrical feeds for lighting standards shall be run underground, not overhead and shall be in accordance with the National Electrical Code (NEC) Handbook.
(2) Poles supporting lighting fixtures for the illumination of parking areas and located directly behind parking spaces, or where they could be hit by snow plows or wide-swerving vehicles, shall be placed a minimum of five feet outside paved area or tire stops, or placed on concrete pedestals at least 30 inches high above the pavement, or suitably protected by other means.
(3) Pole mounted fixtures for lighting horizontal surfaces shall be aimed straight down and poles shall be plumb.
(4) Pole and brackets for supporting lighting fixtures shall be those specifically manufactured for that purpose and shall be designed and rated for the weights and wind loads involved.
(5) Pole foundations shall be designed consistent with the wind loads and local soil conditions involved.
(G) Maintenance. Lighting fixtures and ancillary equipment shall be maintained so as to always meet the requirements of this chapter.
(H) Billboards and signs.
(1) The lighting of billboards and signs shall not provide for excessive illumination, light pollution, glare, and light trespass.
(2) Externally illuminated billboards and signs shall have fixtures mounted at the top of the billboard or sign and aimed downward. The fixtures shall be designed, fitted and aimed to shield the source from off-site view and to place the light output onto and not beyond the sign or billboard. At no point on the face of the sign or billboard shall the illumination exceed 30 footcandles.
(3) The illumination of billboards shall be limited to commercial and industrial zoning districts and the illumination of billboards within 400 feet of a residential district or use shall not be permitted.
(4) Rotating, traveling, pulsing, flashing or oscillating light sources, lasers, beacons, searchlights or strobe lighting shall not be permitted.
(5) The use of highly reflective signage that creates nuisance glare or a safety hazard shall not be permitted.
(I) Performance standards. Single-family dwellings and agricultural or residential accessory structures.
(1) No lighting shall be permitted that shines directly onto an adjacent residence.
(2) No lighting shall be permitted that creates a hazard by shining onto a public right-of-way.
(3) Floodlights and other directional fixtures visible from an adjacent residential use shall be extinguished by no later than 11:00 p.m. or controlled by a motion sensor.
(J) Recreational uses. The nighttime illumination of outdoor recreational facilities typically necessitate higher than normally allowed fixture mounting heights and aiming angles, utilize very high-wattage lamps and potentially produce unacceptable levels of light trespass and glare when located near residential properties. Permission to illuminate such facilities shall be granted only when the city is satisfied that the health, safety and welfare rights of nearby property owners have been considered.
(1) Performance area lighting. This is the lighting directed upon the field to illuminate the recreational activity. The maximum permitted post height for the performance area lighting is 60 feet. Post height shall be limited to the minimum height necessary to meet the performance area lighting needs of the specific event.
(2) General area lighting. This is a low level lighting system used to facilitate pedestrian circulation, patrons leaving the facility, clean-up, nighttime maintenance, and the like.
(3) All luminaires employed in outdoor recreational activities shall be the full-cutoff luminary type unless the performance area lighting needs of the event cannot be met through the use of full-cutoff luminaries, as determined by the city.
(4) Where non-cutoff luminaries such as floodlights must be used to meet the lighting design objectives for the performance area lighting, the luminaries shall be equipped with glare shields, visors, barn doors, or other similar shielding accessories as required to limit illumination to the performance area.
(5) No direct illumination shall project off the property.
(K) Plan submission. Where site lighting is regulated under this chapter, the following is required information for all applicable reviews and approvals.
(1) A plan complete with all structures, parking spaces, building entrances, traffic areas (vehicular and pedestrian), existing and proposed vegetation, and adjacent uses that may be adversely effected. The lighting plan shall contain a layout of all proposed and existing fixtures, including but not limited to, architectural, building entrance, canopy, soffit, landscape, flag, sign, and the like by location, orientation, aiming direction, mounting height, lamp, photometry and type.
(2) For all commercial, residential and industrial site plans, 10' x 10' illuminance grid of horizontal footcandles overlaid on the site plan, plotted out to 0.0 footcandles, which demonstrates compliance with the light trespass, illuminance, and uniformity requirements as set forth in this chapter or as otherwise required by the city.
(3) Description of the proposed equipment, including fixture information, photometrics, reduction devices, lamps, on/off control devices, mounting heights, pole foundation details, pole protection means and mounting methods.
(4) When landscaping plans are involved, they shall contain the lighting fixture locations and shall demonstrate that the site lighting and landscaping have been coordinated to minimize conflict between vegetation and intended light distribution, both initially and at vegetation maturity.
(5) The following notes shall appear on the lighting plan:
(a) Post-approval alterations to lighting plans or intended substitutions for approved lighting equipment shall be submitted to the city for review and approval.
(b) The city reserves the right to conduct post-installation inspections to verify compliance with the chapter requirements and approved lighting plan commitments, and if deemed appropriate by the city, to require remedial action at no expense to the city.
(c) All exterior lighting shall meet full-cutoff criteria unless otherwise approved by the city.
(d) Installer shall notify city to arrange for inspection and approval of all exterior lighting prior to its installation.
(L) Safety hazards.
(1) If a lighting installation creates a safety hazard, the person responsible for the lighting shall be notified and required to take remedial action.
(2) If appropriate corrective action has not been taken within 15 days of notification, the city may take appropriate legal action.
(M) Nonconforming lighting.
(1) Any lighting fixture or lighting installation existing on the effective date of this chapter that does not conform with the requirements of this chapter shall be considered as a lawful nonconformance.
(2) A nonconforming light fixture or lighting installation shall be made to conform with the requirements of this chapter when:
(a) Minor corrective action, such as re-aiming or shielding can achieve conformity with the applicable requirements of this chapter.
(b) It is deemed by the city to create a safety hazard.
(c) It is replaced by another fixture or fixtures or abandoned or relocated.
(d) The number of fixtures is increased by 50% or more.
(e) There is a change in use.
(Ord. 616, passed 9-23-2013)