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Photo rendering of the MC Football field at night—view from Vista Grande, Greenbrae, CA.

MARIN CATHOLIC COMMUNITY LIGHTS INITIATIVE

To enhance the community atmosphere and overall youth experience, Marin Catholic is proposing a state-of-the-art field lighting system to allow for certain night use of its athletic stadium. The plan is designed to be sensitive to the surrounding neighborhood, while providing convenient and enjoyable opportunities for our youth, families, and neighbors.
 
The proposal includes four, 80 foot light poles installed around the stadium that will utilize LED lights, which offer unparalleled light control and reduced energy consumption. This means there is essentially no glare from the lights into the neighborhood – it is a highly targeted system that only lightens the field of play. 

More information regarding this specialized lighting technology is available here:
Click here for general information about Musco LED technology. 
Click here to view a video about Musco technology. 

In Marin, there is a tremendous need for safe, controlled places for our teens at night. We believe that Friday evening sporting events will provide our kids and families with a healthy outlet, not only for MC students, but youth throughout the County. There is also an incredible shortage of athletic fields for all sports, and the lights will give student athletes greater access and the ability to compete more safely and conveniently on the field, whether it is football, soccer, lacrosse, or other sports. Having access to fields in the evening hours will allow students to attend a full school day and not compromise their academics because of early dismissals for sports. We believe that it’s in the best interest of Marin County to support youth sports and create more events that build community.


FAQs

Q:  How does this type of lighting system reduce light pollution?
A:  The Musco company’s LED light system is a new type of stadium lighting that offers high quality light with minimal glare and state-of-the-art light control.  The lights are highly energy-efficient. This video demonstrates the use at a sports complex in Georgia.
 
Q: How many light towers will be installed?
A: Four.
 
Q: How will non-MC families and youth benefit from this proposal?
A: Having a lighted field will increase the availability of this limited resource for all athletes in the county. It will also create excitement for the athletes and families of opposing schools as they participate in these evening community events at Marin Catholic. It is expected that families with younger children as well as other community members would also enjoy attending the sporting events.
           
Q: How often will the lights be used?
A: Our proposal is in two parts:
  1. Weekend nights: Ten night games per year; max attendance to be set around 1,500; lights off by 10:00pm.
  2. Weekday nights: Practices for sports team that utilize the field; games for soccer and lacrosse (crowds typically less than 200); lights off by 9:00pm.
Q: How much traffic does the school anticipate this will generate on Friday nights?
A: As part of the application process, a traffic study is being conducted and the results will be made public. The study is being administered by the same professionals that analyzed the traffic impact of the Marin General Hospital retrofit.
 
Q:  How will MC accommodate all of the parking for these large events?
A:  In addition to Marin Catholic’s on-site parking along with St. Sebastian, we have partnerships with our institutional and commercial neighbors to use neighboring parking lots to accommodate overflow parking. As part of the application process, we will identify the parking plan for the weekend night sporting events. When finished, MC will make this plan publicly available. MC currently hosts Friday night basketball games that have drawn up to 1000 spectators, without a parking or public safety issue.
 
Q: Will MC take any steps during games to help with traffic control and public safety?
A: MC will hire a security company to help with traffic flow and public safety.  Marin Catholic has hosted up to 1000 spectators for Friday night basketball games for years without serious traffic or public safety incidents.
 
Q: Will this increase noise upon the neighborhood?
A: While sporting events draw crowds with cheering fans, the noise would be limited to a designated number of weekend nights per year, versus Saturday afternoons. Marin Catholic has taken several steps to reduce the noise level of its athletic events. For instance, the newly installed PA system has reduced the noise level during the games. A recent study by the County of Marin verified the improvement of the sound system, which is only used during MC events – the only exception being Special Olympics events. Marin Catholic does not anticipate significant crowd noise during weekday practices or games given the low attendance at such events.
 
Q. When will the PA system be used during times when the lights will be on?
The PA system will only be used for the ten weekend night events per year and the varsity soccer and lacrosse games, consistent with current practice. The PA system will not be used during weekday JV games or any practices.
To receive additional information or if you have questions please email communitylights@marincatholic.org.

RECENT NEWS

On August 15, Marin Catholic resubmitted its application to the county. The links below provide updated information from the latest submission.

The Kentfield Planning Board Commission will meet to review the latest documents on Wednesday evening, September 14 at 7:00pm in the Deedy Lounge Student Center at the  College of Marin. The public is invited to attend.