To help brighten patients’ stay, Children’s Hospital Colorado broke out the lights — and a whole lot of them! The private, nonprofit pediatric healthcare network enlisted Oelo Lighting Solutions, a Fort Collins-based company, to install 6,200 linear feet of permanent, color-changing lighting to accent its 40-acre Anschutz Medical Campus before the holidays — and long after. The system features more than 8,265 lights that illuminates three buildings consisting of 14 separate rooflines. Plus, the system doubles as year-round holiday lighting to help patients celebrate other occasions long after the winter months.
Featuring more than 16 million hues and 10 movement settings, the hospital can glow green for St. Patrick’s Day, patriotic colors during the Fourth of July and traditional Christmas colors throughout December. The Children’s Hospital Colorado can even root on the Denver Broncos, its community partner, with game-day blue and orange (that’s of course when the hospital isn’t glowing its own iconic red, yellow, orange and blue hues).
Recognized by the U.S. News & World Report as one of the nation’s best children’s hospitals, the organization realizes that “kids are incredibly different and need incredibly different care.” Bringing cheer is part of that healing process, and the hospital specializes in “the big things, little things and everything in between” — even adding a little extra glow to restless nights.
“We’re extremely proud of this project,” Oelo COO Clay Horst said. “The Children’s Hospital holds a special place in our hearts because we’ve had several employees whose children have been treated there, and we know firsthand how scary it can be for families going through those uncertain trails. We hope that Oelo can boost the spirits of patients, their families and the Children’s Hospital healthcare team!”
The Aurora location sits at the juncture of I-225 and Colfax at the eastern edge of the Denver metro area, making the hospital a beacon of light in the community, and the campus prides itself on its “blend of art, design and state-of-the-art technology. Every detail — from layout to patient flow, design to décor, landscaping to color schemes — was built to help kids heal faster based off data from evidence-based design.”
The Oelo lighting system is the perfect fit, featuring a cloud-based system that gives the hospital the ability to control each building separately (or together) from anywhere in the world. Additionally, event lighting can be scheduled up to 12 months in advance with the system activating automatically per the schedule. From a management standpoint, Oelo is a no-brainer, helping the grounds crew eliminate the ongoing time and money it takes to hang and coordinate holiday lights on an annual basis.
Featuring a five-year warranty, each system is rated for 100,000 hours of use — the equivalent of 22 years of nightly 12-hour glow. In comparison, LED string lights and neon tube lights are only rated for 10,000-40,000 hours. Meanwhile, Oelo’s patented color-changing lighting system touts permanent weather-resistant channels that blend in with the buildings’ exterior, available in acrylic or aluminum, making it practically invisible by day — and yet hard to miss at night thanks to color-changing LEDs.
“From California to Florida and up into Canada, we are getting hundreds of requests across the country to quote our permanent lighting system, and that’s in the off-season,” General Manager Devin Rodarmel said. “Today, home and business owners are all about automation, and we can’t think of any bigger hassle than hanging holiday lights every year. But with permanent holiday lighting, all of that has changed. We install once, and after that, our customers enjoy their lights year-round.”
Last year, Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas invested in an Oelo system, accenting nine buildings across the 122-year-old campus with more than 7,500 lights, and in November, the city of Fort Collins’ facility management team enlisted Oelo to illuminate the City Hall entrance with plans to expand to other key community buildings.
Considered one of the “premium” manufacturers of permanent holiday lights, Oelo has also been showcased on the Lifetime TV’s home makeover show Designing Spaces and DIY’s I Want That series and was touted in the USA Franchising magazine as “a great product that can help commercial businesses attract attention and enhance curb appeal.” The article highlighted Human Bean, a coffee franchisee, and its use of permanent structural lighting, along with a list of commercial customers, which includes storefronts, restaurants, boutique hotels, fire stations, vehicle service shops and more. Oelo’s ability to connect multiple controllers makes it a favorite for large-scale shopping centers that need to synchronize lighting for additional structures.
Oelo is backed by a 60-year-old parent company with a 30-year specialty in the mission critical lighting industry. Incorporated in 1954, the company supports two other divisions that offer specialty lighting products in the emergency vehicle industry, which means Oelo knows the ins and outs of government projects.
“It’s neat that Oelo was born from the emergency industry and that it has all come full circle with a hospital project of this scale,” Horst said. “We’re proud to know that we’ve created structural lighting that keeps on giving.”