Several cities are opting to replace their conventional lighting systems with LED systems in an effort to improve road safety, to save energy and reduce their maintenance costs.
The benefits of this modernization of conventional lighting systems include:
- Protection of the environment
- Reduction of usage costs
- Light quality improvement
But how to make efficient use of LED lighting systems in a city?
Streets and highways
Proper street lighting systems must provide even distribution of light and eliminate the glare effect. Luminaires should be easily installed and require minimum maintenance.
The luminaire’s luminous flux should be directed toward the area that needs lighting as opposed to the sky; this way, the suitable lighting improves visibility and minimizes optical loss.
Furthermore, it is better to select luminaires that distribute consistent and dependable light; their brightness level should be perfectly adjusted to avoid creating significant contrast with darker surroundings, thus providing good visual comfort.
Deciding on the LED lighting option for city streets helps reach these objectives.
Parks and Green Spaces
First, lighting should guarantee the safety of all passersby along the footpaths. Very often, other areas remain in the shadows. The lighting system should clearly illuminate obstacles as well as other pedestrians. Consequently, it is imperative that both vertical and horizontal surfaces be properly lit up.
To improve visibility, the lighting system should be fitted with a lamp that dispenses a good colour rendering; a CRI of 60 is ideal. Luminaires that offer a wide range of luminous flux and optics should be selected in order to better adjust light levels, when necessary.
It is essential, moreover, that the designated luminaires be airtight to prevent dust, water and insects from penetrating the component, and to ensure their effectiveness over a long period of time; an IP code of 60 or higher is an excellent option.
The lighting systems installed at lower levels must also be vandal-proof. Heavy-duty materials such as aluminum, glass and polycarbonate are worth considering.
Often, parks are embellished with decorative and attractive luminaires. These should be chosen with a view to fitting perfectly into the scenery.
Very often, the selected lighting will be coloured, and enriched with a colour temperature that accentuates the rich materials. Lighting also serves to create an atmosphere and embellish the quality of architectural elements.
Illumination should be consistent, lighting levels need to spread evenly, and there should be no loss of light or needless glare. Pathways, signage and the presence of other users should be clearly identifiable during the day as well as at night.
Cities and towns often act as hosts during special events that require unusual lighting systems. For example, Montréal’s entertainment district is festooned with giant masts that brighten the streets of the city and provide scenic lighting to the area. They have been laid out so as to avoid disrupting circulation or hindering pedestrian traffic.
Temporary lighting systems are also set up on the occasion of various festivities. They are often brightly coloured, they add to the lively atmosphere, and often stimulate the emotions. Cities will frequently use specific sets of lights to highlight each particular event.
In today’s climate, we are forced to acknowledge the concept of ‘smart city’.
Cities and towns would greatly benefit from the installation of a LED-based lighting management system that allows for wireless control and supervision of public lighting. This formula would serve to make the most of all the advantages of a LED-based lighting system while ensuring significant savings in the long run.
In conclusion, it is safe to say that various areas of municipalities should opt for a new lighting technology to improve the quality of light, ensure protection of the environment and save money. Consider why LED lighting is a beneficial and cost-effective solution; read the article entitled LED LIGHTS: An Economical and Long-Lasting Solution.