Solar LED Lighting for
Parks and Trails

Why Park Lighting is Important

Park Solar Lighting

Our parks and greenways are valuable and solar LED lighting for parks makes them safer and more accessible.  Communities are investing in more green spaces to promote health, reduce traffic, and provide recreation opportunities.

Why should parks and trails only be available during daylight hours, when many of us are at work or school?


One of the main reasons planners include park lighting is safety. Effective trail lighting illuminates obstacles for both pedestrians and bicyclists. You need to pay special attention to lighting wherever pedestrians and vehicles come together. Whether you consider parking lots or paths that cross a roadway, parks can be dangerous. They are likely to include kids, pets, and plenty of distractions.

The Office of Gang Reduction and Youth Development in Los Angeles has found that keeping parks open and lit during peak summer night hours can reduce gang violence too.

Getting More Value from Your Parks and Recreation Resources

Municipalities often choose park solar lighting for recreational areas and other public spaces. Whether you need a pathway light, solar playground lights or solar parking lights, installing our solar lighting system is easy. If you are using direct burial poles, it's not much different than planting a tree.

You can avoid damaging existing landscape or hardscape, as well as the cost of switchgear, hookup, and electric bills. The SmartLight batteries have an expected life of 10-12 years and that translates to even more cost saving.

Solar lighting for parks is sustainable and resilient too. The systems are emission-free and flood tolerant. If the utility power fails, your solar lights will continue to perform. And at the end-of-life, you can recycle 95% of the system's component materials.

For trail lighting, the solar lighting option can also help you overcome right-of-way challenges.

Increasing Mobility

More often than ever, visitors are using multiuse trails and green spaces for more than just a walk in the park. Commuters are turning to walking, bicycling and other modes of transportation to get to and from work. Commuting from work often means traveling after dark. Commercial solar path lights make multi-use corridors a safer alternative than shared streets.

Where Should You Provide Lighting?

The Rails-to-Trails organization cites AASHTO minimum recommendations for lighting parks. Solar powered park lights can quickly address them.

  • Tunnels or at overpasses
  • Trailheads
  • Bridge entrances and exits
  • Public gathering places
  • Along streets
  • Crosswalks
  • Where the path crosses another path or sidewalk

Choosing the Best Park Solar Lights

Usually there isn't much ambient light in parks. Ambient light is lighting that exists from other sources like street lights and retail lighting. This means that you can often use a lower intensity outdoor light. To be sure, the lighting system doesn't have to be the largest available, but it's a mistake to choose lower quality because you need lower light levels.


Off-the shelf all-in-one solar lighting systems and other "mini" solar lights aren't a viable choice for lighting outdoor spaces intended for public use. You can be sure that a tiny solar panel will deliver a tiny amount of power. Typically, they aren't capable of providing adequate lighting all night, year-round. They often depend on sharply dimming the lights in winter or relying on motion activation. Unfortunately, wildlife and weather can result in motion sensor faults and/or in depleted batteries.


We also recommend overhead lights that will illuminate faces and not just the ground's surface. This provides the safety of bollards but also illuminates faces and other objects. Overall, it creates a much greater feeling of security.

The best commercial solar path lights are configured with a full energy calculation for the project and a lighting design that represents the light levels the system can provide in winter. You should also look for long battery life and weatherization to minimize the cost of maintenance.

Since parks are often targets for vandals, you should also look for systems that are vandal resistant.

Whatever the application, commercial solar lights like the SmartLight light are well suited for the job.

Respecting Nature and the Neighbors

High glare, bright white lights can make a park uninviting, disturb wildlife and bother neighbors. Fonroche can provide you with energy efficient lighting fixtures appropriate for parks. We offer Dark Sky Certified fixtures in a range of color temperatures to provide warmer illumination. We also provide shields to block light from sensitive areas or nearby properties.

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