Nevada County Lighting Refferences

Additional Nevada County Lighting Refferences in Zoning Regulations Notes

Back to - Outdoor Lighting Regulations in California, Nevada County

General Plan  adopted 1996 
Habitats throughout the county have been modified by human activity.  The ... noise and night lighting have served to reduce the habitat values throughout the area. ...
Chapter 18: Aesthetics    Volume I - Page 193 (.pdf)
Directive Policies
Policy 18.10 New and replacement road system lighting shall utilize fixtures and light sources that minimize night-time light pollution, without compromising traffic safety.
Policy 18.11 New Commercial, Industrial and Multiple Family development shall utilize fixtures and light sources that minimize night time light pollution.

Zoning Ordinance  Chapter 2 of the Land Use and Development Code. (.pdf 2MB)
Sec. L-II 3.8 Communication Towers and Facilities
6. Lighting for communication facilities shall be limited as follows:
a. All approved lighting shall be shielded or directed on site to
minimize off-site light spill except for lighting required by the
Federal Aviation Administration.
b. In residential zones, lighting shall be limited to security lighting that
is manually-operated or motion-detector controlled.
Sec. L-II 3.11 Home Businesses
5. The business shall not alter the appearance of the premises, including but
not limited to lighting, signage and outdoor activity.
Sec. L-II 3.12 Model Homes, Temporary
5. All lighting shall comply with the standards of Section L-II 4.2.8.
Page 166
Sec. L-II 4.2.8 Lighting
A. PURPOSE. This section establishes standards to provide for efficient, safe and
attractive outdoor lighting while minimizing nighttime light pollution and energy
B. APPLICABILITY. Lighting standards shall apply to Development Permits, Use
Permits, and subdivisions, unless otherwise excepted in this section.
1. Fully shielded – a technique or method of construction and/or manufacture
which does not allow any light dispersion to shine above the horizontal
plane from the lowest light emitting point of the light fixture and which
precludes visibility of the light source.
2. Glare – artificial light that causes annoyance, discomfort or loss of visual
performance and visibility.
3. Light pollution – artificial light which, through uplighting, detrimentally
affects the clarity of the night sky, or causes undesirable glare, skyglow, or
light trespass.
4. Light trespass – artificial light that produces an unnecessary and
unwanted illumination of an adjacent property.
5. Skyglow – the glow above brightly lit developed areas, visible in the night
sky, that occurs when light shines into the sky and is reflected off clouds,
particles of moisture or dust suspended in the atmosphere.
6. Strip Light-a continuous band of light not necessary for public safety.
D. STANDARDS. All outdoor lighting shall meet the following standards:
1. A lighting plan shall be submitted with all discretionary projects that
propose to install outdoor lighting. Plans shall depict the location, height
and positioning of all light fixtures and shall provide a description of the
type and style of lighting proposed, including pole or building mounted
area lights and sign lights.
2. All outdoor light fixtures shall be fully shielded to prevent the light source
or lens from being visible from adjacent properties and roadways, except
for the following:
a. Airport lighting required for the safe and efficient movement of
aircraft during flight, take off and landing.
b. Outdoor light fixtures used for outdoor recreational facilities when
such shielding would cause an impairment to the visibility required
in the intended recreational activity. In such cases, partially
shielded fixtures and directional lighting methods shall be utilized to
limit light pollution, glare and light trespass, without diminishing the
performance standards of the intended recreational activity.
3. Externally illuminated signs and building identification shall use topmounted
light fixtures which shine light downward.
4. The use of façade, or “wash” lighting is limited to public buildings, or
buildings with historic importance. Façade lighting may be approved only
when it is determined that it is compatible with the level of lighting in the
immediate area and where it will not generate excessive illumination,
skyglow or glare.
Page 168
5. Light fixtures mounted on the canopies of service stations, on
convenience stores, restaurants, or other similar businesses, shall be
recessed so that the lens cover is recessed or flush with the bottom
of the canopy so that light is restrained to no more than 85 degrees from
vertical. As an alternative or supplement to recessed ceiling lights,
indirect lighting may be used where light is beamed upward and then
reflected down from the underside of the canopy. In this case fixtures
must be shielded so that direct illumination is focused exclusively on the
underside of the canopy. Lights shall not be mounted on the top or sides
(fascia) of the canopy, and the sides (fascia) of the canopy shall not be
Page 169
6. Use fixtures with high efficiency lamps. High pressure sodium, and
mercury vapor light fixtures are prohibited.
7. Light poles shall be restricted to a maximum of 20’ in height except that on
parcels adjacent to residential or rural zoning districts, the maximum
height shall be restricted to 15’.
8. All exterior lighting shall be maintained as installed.
9. Lighting shall be turned off between 11 p.m. and sunrise, except for those
businesses operating during these hours or where a safety or security
need is clearly demonstrated.
10. Lighting systems, other than signs, shall include dimmers, occupancy
sensors, time controls or separate circuits, to allow sections of the lighting
to be turned off as needed.
11. Security lighting fixtures shall be shielded and aimed so that illumination is
directed only to the designated area and not cast on other areas. The use
of motion or heat sensors may provide greater security than continuous
lighting and are the preferred alternative to continuous nighttime lighting.
12. The use of searchlights, lasers, strip lights, flood or spot lights is
Page 169

Sec. L-II 4.2.9 Parking
F. Parking Lot Construction Standards.
9. Lighting. See Section L–II 4.2.8.
Page 191

Page 197
7. Lighting. When lighted, all signs shall be illuminated by continuous, nonpulsating,
shielded and stationary light sources, using light fixtures, which
direct external light sources at the sign so as to illuminate only the sign
face. Any external spot or flood lighting shall be arranged so that the light
source is screened from direct view. ...
Page 234
Sec. L-II 5.4 Zoning Compliance
C. SITE PLANS.  Site plans required above shall consist of ...
6. The location, size, height, and type of all signs
7. The location and general nature of all lighting