The ULA Group continues working closely with the leading Melbournian architects and lighting companies to light up the city’s iconic structures. After our successful re lighting of the iconic Melbourne ‘Red Sticks’, we were invited to head up supply and design another project managed by Transurban – illuminating the towers of Bolte Bridge. When the old lighting system of the bridge had reached the end of its life, it was an opportunity to look at how to enhance the lighting while also helping to meet Australian energy reduction targets.
Working closely with Transurban’s engineers and after several site tests, the decision was made to replace 42 high-powered metal halide lights on the bridge towers with 36 Griven Powershine D RGBW LED exterior wash luminiares. Seventeen fixtures were installed on newly erected platforms at the base of each column using a combination of narrow and medium optics to achieve even coverage and maximum light output. Once the installation of the new LED lighting system was complete, Transurban reported a reduction in energy usage by incredible 89 percent – the power usage for the Bridge lights went from 327,000kWh per year to 36,000kWh per year. The components and replaced fittings from the previous lighting system were recycled and re-used wherever possible. The new Griven LED lighting fittings have an estimated operating life of 50,000 hours, which is much longer then the previous system.
The new Griven Powershine LED wash lights also create endless possibilities to achieve dynamic colors, which can illuminate the Bolte’s iconic towers in different hues, to support and involve the bridge in special cultural and sporting events (with the consent of the State and other authorities). The new lighting system is all controlled by Pharos LPC Control via Lumen Radio Flex Outdoor Transmitter and Outdoor Receiver, which transmits the DMX signal from one tower to all fixtures. The new LED luminaries were strategically installed and positioned at the base of each tower to minimize the risk of glare to passing motorists and reduce ‘light spill’. The environmental benefits and cost savings achieved in this project, stands as a great example of how to replace ‘out of date’ lighting installations with new economic and sustainable solutions. Over all the results are both aesthetically pleasing, energy efficient and culturally sustainable, which assimilates perfectly into Melbourne’s progressive city environment.
The Bolte Bridge spans Melbourne’s Yarra River. Built in 1999, it was designed by architects Dentor Corker Marshal and named after the former Premier of Victoria Sir Henry Bolte. It is one of the largest balanced cantilever cast in situ box girder bridges in Australia and forms part of the CityLink system of toll roads.
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