Sometimes things just come together, and in a hurry. Just ask Lee Feil of Greensburg’s Green City Signs.



   Sometimes things just come together, and in a hurry. Just ask Lee Feil of Greensburg’s Green City Signs.

   After making an inquiry in early January about finding someone to construct a large storefront sign (Feil does two-dimensional signage) for Fleener’s Furniture and Flooring, Feil suddenly found himself in the midst of arranging for a donated, state of the art, solar-powered street-side sign for Greensburg’s City Hall.

   Feil first called Robert Harper of The Sign House in Salina about producing signage for Fleener. Harper mentioned he’d worked with “a guy in Kansas City who’d come up with a solar film (thinner than conventional solar panels) powered sign design.” That “guy”, Curtis Shaddox of SunPower Signs was glad to hear from Feil, especially when Feil mentioned he was calling from Greensburg.

   “He got very interested in doing something here when he found out I was in Greensburg,” Feil said. “He and Robert (Harper) agreed to work together to design and build the thing as a donation to the City. Also involved in the mix was Green Energy Concepts Group in Mankato, MN, of which SunPower is a subsidiary.

   Once SunPower had designed the sign, which features a top section meant to resemble the exterior design of the new LEED-Platinum City Hall, Sign House put the sign together in less than three weeks. Representatives of all three companies drove the sign down from Salina to Greensburg Friday morning, before they and Feil carried it into the lobby of City Hall, where it will remain until it can be mounted on a concrete pad at the southeast corner of Wisconsin and Main, just outside city offices.

   During the day the solar strip on top of the sign will gather and store enough electricity to illuminate the sign throughout the night by use of energy efficient LED bulbs inside the sign.

   According to a press release from SunPower the batteries will need to be replaced only every five years, while the LED lights should last 15 years. The solar film itself has a life expectancy of 25 years. And being completely off grid, the sign will require no wiring, and the trench digging that accompanies typically powered signs.

   Though the concrete slab for the sign had already been freshly poured just before it arrived in town, it was later discovered it runs north to south length-wise, rather than the prescribed east to west.

   “We’ll just have to re-pour it,” Greensburg City Administrator Steve Hewitt said. “In the meantime the sign will stay inside here and I’ll get to show it off for a while.”

    Fleener’s Furniture, meanwhile, will get its own sign later. Though it won’t be solar-powered, it likely will be LED illuminated and will go above the awning of the new store in the middle of the newly finished KCU mall two blocks south of City Hall.

   “The Sign House in Salina will make it,” Wylan Fleener told The Signal. “We’re still designing it, but I wanted to get going on it. I had no idea it would lead to the solar sign at City Hall, but it’s great how it worked out.”