Lighting : LIGHTING Jun-July 2018
24 LIGHTING MAGAZINE | June/July 2018 June/July 2018 | LIGHTING MAGAZINE 25 What are the key considerations when designing a good urban lighting plan for cities? Any real-life application/examples to share? Many cities don’t even have a lighting plan which surprises me greatly because they often invest huge amounts of money in urban design master plans (rightly so!), but give little consideration to night time. I find this bizarre given all the literature and research surrounding public safety and perception, improving the nighttime economy, place making and activation of urban space. The way we generally light cities is for cars with little regard given to humans who inhabit the space after dark. We can be thankful for festivals such as vivid and white night which give awareness to the way light, art and design can contribute to public space during the hours of darkness. Good lighting plans are ones that always take into account individual and specific needs and requirements of the local communities. There is no one size fits all lighting plan just as there is no one for urban master planning. Each city or town is defined by its own individual character and this is incredibly important to accentuate and embrace if a good lighting plan is to be implemented. What are the common misconceptions local governments and authorities have about what works best to achieve a good lighting strategy? I don’t know if there is a common misconception, but like any client, trust and education is key to delivering an outcome that is different from the status quo. I think risk is a factor in the public sector not wanting to take chances on being the guinea pig for untested designs, or new lighting metrics which I can understand. It’s up to us lighting designers to reach out and engage with our clients to show them that there is better ways to light cities, more efficient ways that use less energy, lower capital cost, and other layers to get a much better outcome. The secret is to apply sound design principles like community consultation or pilot studies so that everyone can understand what success looks like. Light is fairly mysterious and that’s what makes it amazing, so sometimes it’s easier to show via a test, rather than a flashy presentation and hoping for the best. I also find that co-design and collaboration with What is something you must consider when first approaching an outdoor urban lighting project? One of the first things you must consider when doing an external lighting is the context and surroundings that your design is going to influence and interface with. You need to fully understand how the user will experience the space, and what implications your lighting design choices may have. Doing thorough research and talking to people local to the space, whether it be public or communities, will give you the best chances of a success because the actual end users will be actively invested in the outcome. If your first approach is to open standards book and pick out what you think the space should be lit to, then you can’t expect to improve the urban design. Is there a big project you have been working on? Who is it for and whose lives will it enhance? We are currently working on an incredibly significant urban project in Melbourne. It is the spire on top of 101 Collins Street. Currently the spire is uplit with big white floodlights and we are bringing in a completely new system of RGB LED using revised mounting locations which will transform the appearance and animate the building each night. It is not a big project in terms of urban design however it’s a big project on a city shaping scale and, this is significant not only for the client whose vision has enabled this to happen, but for the city of Melbourne and the buildings positioning on the skyline. The idea we came up with for the spire lighting and its content is that it starts to have a dialogue with the public, taking on human persona enabling the public to have interactions with the building as part of the city’s urban fabric. This is important because it elevates external lighting design to a level where it is more than just beauty, is a genuine attempt to engage in the narrative of the city. What scale are we talking about here with this Project? How does that impact your approach to the project and how have past experiences shaped your approach to this one? This project is obviously on a city scale and meant to be viewed from quite a distance so you can be forgiving with the resolution and pixel pitch. It means that we are communicating abstract information, and this information can be interpreted from footpath scale all the all the way out to wards the neighbouring suburbs. We take these different views into account when we produce content so that we ensure that those viewing from within the city have as much of an experience as those beyond. We are also working on a media façade on a significant university building where the resolution and Fidelity of the lighting had a direct influence on what type of lighting was suggested, what content they wanted to show, and where the lighting was placed in terms of a building canvas. Flagship retail stores traditionally do this very well by keeping an abstract lighting effect on a building wide scale, while high resolution detailed information is usually positioned at human scale. Illuminating the city – looking beyond functional lighting techniques AN INTERVIEW WITH TIM HUNT, ARUP Images are development sketches for a digitally activated facade project. Tim Hunt INTERVIEW Tim Hunt, Melbourne Lighting Leader at Arup, will be speaking on Smart Lighting Master Planning at the upcoming Australian Smart Lighting Summit, 11-12 September 2018 in Melbourne. In an interview, ahead of the Summit, Tim shares his thoughts with the Lighting magazine on the trends seen in the lighting design space and outlook on good urban lighting plan for cities.
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