Lighting News From the West

By: Galina Zbrizher

I have observed differences between the Lighting Communities of the East and West, which I would like to share with the readers of Lighting Magazine so we can learn from each other. The Canadian Lighting Community should partake in the excitement of interesting projects that have recently been completed, under construction or are in the design stage.

One of the most significant projects completed in 1996 was the new Vancouver International Terminal Building (ITB). Designed by Architectura, one of the best-known architectural firms in Vancouver.

It was built in less than two years, slightly under budget. Both the ITB and the control Tower were built for approximately $265,000,000 The buildings are seismically designed. The Control Tower is built to withstand an earthquake rated 6 on the Richter Scale and be operational after everything else is destroyed.

The ITB has a distinctly West Coast Canadian character with its many First Nations artifacts strategically located throughout the Terminal and culminating in a magnificent “Haida Gwaii” sculpture by renowned artist Bill Reid. At the same time the building is very modern and functional.

A multitude of restaurants, stores and services designed by different architectural, interior design and in some instances theatre stage design firms add excitement and fun, as in the Pacific Market Restaurant located in the departure level, that mimics the carnival mood of the famous Granville Market in Vancouver.

The Lighting system in the airport was designed by Mr. Larry French of Auerbach and Associates from San Francisco and employed many types of materials and techniques. A large portion of the building is designed with either fully indirect or direct/indirect fluorescent.

In many cases, patterns of luminaries replicate the “Log Jam” pattern of the carpet in both paint colour and its orientation. In the waiting areas, 6″ diameter fluorescent tubular luminaries with louvered downlight components are used and “Log Jam” becomes 3 dimensional as well as controversial, as opinions of the design community are split. Other areas employ surface cylinders with glowing domes mounted to the space frame.

Metal halide post top decorative luminaries, mounted on the hinged poles (for ease of relamping and maintenance), are used at the stairs and escalators. Theatre projectors illuminate works of art. It is worth mentioning how the tendering and purchasing process was implemented.

Purchase of all luminaires was tendered by the Airport. A “Not to exceed” item price was included in the invitation for tender for each luminaire along with specifications. All luminaires were purchased by the Airport and then handed over to the electrical contractor for the installation.

Total cost of the lighting component on the project, excluding theatre projectors and parkade lighting was close to $3.5 million. Rumour has it, that by employing this tender strategy, the Airport was able to save at least 5% of the costs. Now that the construction of the International Terminal Building is complete, the design has started on the renovation of the Domestic Terminal Building.

Kasian Kennedy Design Partners is the Interior Design and Prime Consultant while MCW Consultants Ltd. is the mechanical, electrical and lighting design consultant. I hope this gives you a brief appreciation of some of the design work being carried out here on the West Coast. “Street Lighting Controversy – Western Style” will be next. Galina Zbrizher is a lighting designer with MCW Consultants Ltd., Vancouver.

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