Urban lighting is both a question of quality and quantity. A demonstration, completely nuanced, at Darcy Square of Dijon, France's tramway.
Within the framework of the planning for the Dijon tramway, landscaper Alfred Peter has also given value to the contiguous public spaces. More precisely, two major sites in the city:
- Darcy Square
- Place de la Republique
From a Living Room to a Garden
Darcy Square was structured as an urban living room. According to the declivity and the hidden aspect of the underground parking, big flower pots, acting like benches, have been more or less buried in the public space.
According to the landscaper, all the plant species are different, in order to accentuate the living room aspect and to animate the plant selection all year round. Close to the tramway station and the SNCF train station, the square has become a meeting place for citizens, as well as tourists.
In order to give nocturnal value to Darcy Place, Alfred Peter called on Jean-Yves Soetinck of Lighting Act. Taking the plant plots that the landscaper created, which go from the triumphal arch in the direction of the Garden, the lighting designer implanted monumental 4.5 meter lanterns there. His idea: "rediscovering the heat that comes from the indoors, as in an urban room," he explains.
Like the avenue of chandeliers in Jean Cocteau's film "Beauty and the Beast" - lights, Henri Alekan - the lighting accents the principal pathways while leaving the passerby free in his movements.
"A great blanket of diffuse blue light reinforces the warming effect of the chandeliers and confers a particular ambiance on the square," describes Jean-Yves Soetinck. "The impression of warm white light, made up from 3,000K halogens, is amplified by the general blanket of blue light. Very quickly, pedestrians perceive nothing other than the warmth of the fixtures."
During the daytime, as at night, the cylindrical shade of the fixture is the remarkable touch of this achievement.
And finding inspiration in the geometric motifs of the veneered tiled cobblestone of the city, Jean-Yves Soetinck designed an original shade.
The outcome is a "polished mirror; it lightens the form because it reflects the surrounding urban environment." Today, it's the unique signature of Darcy Square.
The choice of lighting furniture brings us quite quickly to Comatelec's Boreal. Indeed, it only imposes the three decors of the catalog to the candidate limitations.
This fixture was created by Laurent Fachard for the restructuring of the Bordeaux dock. For Dijon, Jean-Yves Soetinck developed a version within the range of the fabricator for the square's lateral axes.
Along the facades, between 12 and 15 meters, isotropic reflectors - multi-mirror - produce indirect peripheral blue lighting. It accents the contrasts while reinforcing the heat of the warm white sources.
The projector is fixed in a wall lamp below an isotropic multi-mirror reflector.
At 4 meters, the series of small asymmetrical projectors reinforces the lighting at the foot of the facade, with the white tint at more sustained lighting levels.
This is a beautiful project to visit where quality and quantity rhyme with the lighting design.
How does public lighting affect ambiance? Have lighting features been developed in your community? Do you have any unique lighting stories? Please share your experiences and thoughts in the comments below.
Credits: Data and images linked to sources. See original article for detailed "after" images.