Improvements at The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Park campus in Long Beach indicate recovery from Hurricane Katrina, including in recent weeks the addition of Light Emitting Diodes (LED) street lights, street names and new outdoor signage.
Mississippi Power, along with the Southern Company and the Electric Power Research Institute, have turned the Gulf Park campus into a testing ground for new street lights designed to improve the nighttime environment while reducing energy costs. The organizations are collaborating on the project, which began in late January, after the installation of 20 new LED lights was completed along the north section of the campus parking lot near the railroad tracks.
“The different groups worked together to develop a test to help Mississippi Power learn more about how the new LED street lighting equipment performs in a real world setting,” said Shelley Scarborough, Mississippi Power Project Manager. “We want to see if it really does perform better, for less money, than existing street lighting systems.”
Scarborough said the LED equipment is being subjected to the same weather and electrical conditions as existing street lighting systems to test its efficiency, longevity and light output. Over the next two-and-a-half years the LED lights will be evaluated quarterly on light output levels and efficiency criteria. The findings will allow the collaborating organizations to compare the LED performance with conventional systems and help determine if it can be cost effective for street lights.
In addition to the street lights, 16 new black and gold street signs can be seen around the Gulf Park campus. The newly named streets, selected by a 12-member committee of faculty, staff and students, were chosen to represent both historic elements of the campus and the community of Long Beach.
“The committee tried to consider the university’s heritage, the history of Gulf Park College for Women and the history of Long Beach when selecting the street names,” said Shelia White, committee chair for the Gulf Park campus street names. “We wanted names that reflected the beauty of the campus as well as its history. Because the campus is a vital part of Long Beach, it was also important for us to include the connection to the city.”
A second committee was appointed at Southern Miss Gulf Coast to determine locations and design for outdoor signage on the Gulf Park campus. Most notable is the construction of the gateway sign at Highway 90 in the front of the campus. The 35-foot sign is designed to withstand wind and water, and is highly visible from both westbound and eastbound lanes on Highway 90. Additional signage and columns have also been constructed at the other entrances of the campus.
For more information about Southern Miss Gulf Coast, visit www.usm.edu/gc.
One of 16 new black and gold street signs on The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Park campus in Long Beach are among improvements at the campus that shows signs of recovery from Hurricane Katrina. In addition to the newly named streets, Light Emitting Diodes (LED) street lights and new outdoor signage have also been added. (Southern Miss University Communications photo by Francesca Linthicum)
About The University of Southern Mississippi
The University of Southern Mississippi, founded in 1910, is a comprehensive doctoral and research-extensive university fulfilling its mission of being a leading university in engaging and empowering individuals to transform lives and communities. In a tradition of leadership for student development, Southern Miss is educating a 21st century work force providing intellectual capital, cultural enrichment and innovation to Mississippi and the world. Southern Miss is located in Hattiesburg, Miss., with an additional campus and teaching and research sites on the Mississippi Gulf Coast; further information is found at www.usm.edu/gulfcoast .