Brief Summary of Outdoor Lighting Codes

State of Arizona (all cities, towns, counties must meet of exceed this code)

Current law is basically as follows:

*No sale of mercury vapor fixtures or replacement parts after 1990, and none may be used after 2010.

* Fixtures using incandescent lamps over 150 watts shall be Full Cutoff (no light above the horizontal), others to be shielded, (no light above the center of the lamp source),

* Fixture using other than incandescent lamps over 70 watts shall be Full Cutoff, others to be shielded.

* Fixtures not meeting the above requirements shall be turned off at midnight by an automatic control device.


Pima County and City of Tucson including South Tucson, the same code

There are variations for "Lighting Classes" such as eating areas, walkways, parking lots, security, decorative effects, etc.

There are variations for "Lighting Areas" such as urban city center, areas around Mt. Lemmon, Kitt Peak, Mount Hopkins, National Parks, etc.

Current code is basically as follows:

*All lighting greater than 3000 lumens to be "full cutoff" lights.  Some types of lights not allowed in certain Areas

*All lighting under 3000 lumens, shielding not required but highly recommended and flood or spot lights shall be aimed no higher than 45 degrees to the horizontal  when the source is visible from any adjacent residential property.

*Lumens per net "developed" acre are limited (lumen cap).  There are limits on the Total lumens and limits on the unshielded component, Varies considerably by area and type of light (see table 5.1 in full text).  Max residential for Area E3 (least restrictive residential area) is 55,000 total lumens per net acre  with 12,000 max lumens per net acre for unshielded component of the total.

*All non-residential lighting that is not shielded shall be turned off at 11 PM.

* Holiday lights allowed to exceed lumem caps from Thanksgiving through January 1st.


Oro Valley (joe-update)

There are variations based on Lighting Zones which are defined by the property zoning (C-1, R-1, etc.).

Current code basically as follows:

*Each unshielded light fixture limited to 2000 lumens max.  Some types of lights not allowed in certain Lighting Zones.

*No mercury vapor lamps, searchlights, or laser source lights.

*Pole heights limited to 18 feet, some 28 feet.

*Flood or spot lights shall be aimed no higher than 45 degrees to the horizontal.

*Total Outdoor Light Output limited per net acre.



Marana (joe-update/review)

Current Code basically as follows:

*No new Mercury Vapor lamps, no bottom mounted advertising sign lights, no laser and no searchlights.

*All fixtures to be shielded (essentially no light above the horizontal) except for 25  watt or less incandescent lamps, limit 4 per site.

*All flood or spot lights to have shielded housings and be aimed no higher than 45 degrees to the horizontal, source not visible from adjacent property.

*Total Outdoor Light Output limited per Net Acre, see Table 6.

*Lighting for business operation allowed until 11 PM or until closing, whichever is later.




To be added



Santa Cruz County (joe-review)

Their Code was passed and adopted April 5, 1982, fixtures installed prior to this date are exempt.

*Low Pressure Sodium fixture lamp types must be Partially Shielded (minimal light above the horizontal).

*High Pressure Sodium, Metal Halide, Fluorescent, and Quartz must be Fully Shielded (no light above the horizontal).

*Incandescent greater than 150 watt must be Fully shielded (under 150 w - no shielding required).

*Searchlights for advertising are prohibited.

*No recreational facility shall be illuminated with non-conforming lights after 11 PM unless a specific event has started before 11 PM.



Cochise County

To be added


Pinal County

To be added