Client: Intu Lakeside
Architect: Rawls & Co
Lighting Design: Lighting Design International
Intu Lakeside is a busy shopping centre set in a prime retail location just outside of London, and as you would expect the food hall is a popular destination for shoppers wishing to refuel and recharge their batteries. Situated on the third floor, the food hall area has recently been re-styled to encourage further custom, with the new design offering increased visual prominence from the second floor retail level below. Early in the design process Intu recognised that lighting would be a key aspect of creating the dynamic and vibrant atmosphere they wanted, and invited Lighting Design International (LDI) to work in collaboration with retail specialists Rawls & Co to design the scheme.
The brief to LDI involved using light as a signal to draw customers up the escalators into the food court space, as well as contributing to the creation of a pleasant yet dynamic environment with plenty of visual interest. The architectural and lighting scheme set out to create a more intimate atmosphere by lowering the customers eye line away from the previously up lit glass roof structure. This was achieved by introducing crossbeams that both interrupt roof views and conceal lighting equipment. The food hall can be seen as two distinct areas. Under the glass roof there is an abundance of natural light, however under the deep soffits there is comparatively little natural light. The challenge to LDI was to use lighting techniques to balance the consequences of the architectural interventions, delivering alight and vibrant atmosphere by day, and a comfortable welcoming area during the evening and night.
The LDI solution centres on reducing visible light fittings by introducing bright clean linear LED concealed in various specialist details. These provide even illumination levels while creating visually interesting and bright soffits. This lighting base is punctuated with statement pendants, and limited numbers of focused downlights that ensure lighting is not too flat during the evening. Large bespoke pendants make use of colour and pattern to draw shoppers up the escalators. However, once in the main space visitors are immediately struck by the brightly lit triangular stretched ceiling panel detail that runs around the perimeter of the food court. This detail is a major focal point, and acdc worked closely with LDI to provide the technology that would create the desired lit effect. Mock-ups were created to establish the best possible way of lighting the panels, and it was essential that all of the LED’s gave a consistent output and colour temperature across the large installation. The lighting is designed to fade off towards the centre of the panels to add visual interest, and to ensure the ceiling panels do not appear to flat.
Lighting Designer Graham Rollins explains
“We used LED due to the advantages of long life and minimal maintenance in areas that are difficult to access in a busy environment with long trading hours. It was key to use product that could be fed in long single runs, from a minimal number of remote drivers, improving the maintenance and installation time further while allowing the LED to span the atrium in a single run.”
Some of the acdc ORELLE was supplied in a special extrusion, to offer continuous and homogenous lines of light across the atrium beams. acdc ORELLE contains Cree XPG LEDs selected due to a tight binning process, which is complemented, by acdc’s secondary binning process to ensure all LEDs are within a 2 step MacAdam ellipse, guaranteeing colour continuity. This tight and controlled colour binning was imperative to the design, with LDI using the same ORELLE product to light the cross beams, stepped feature ceiling details and triangular back lit ceiling panels.
ORELLE was used as the light source for the undulating glass reinforced gypsum ceiling, as the long run lengths ensured all drivers could be remote from the detail, to ensure no shadowing or complex cabling. Quick release leader cables, and joints also facilitate made easy maintenance.
To highlight the columns that demarcate the space, LDI selected the acdc CIRO Ultra White for its smaller size and further flexibility, wrapping them around the curved profile to wash light down the columns.
In order to dim and balance the lighting effects DALI constant voltage drivers were used to control of the luminaires.
Designer Graham Rollins further comments:
“CIRO and ORELLE were an ideal partnership for this projects, utilising the same LED’s and colour consistency from two physically different products each with advantages. The ORELLE offers robust lower budget long runs of lighting, while the CIRO offers smaller size for tight detailing, and more flexibly for curves.”