Millennium Bridge © Louise Stickland
One legacy of 2012 is a permanent lighting installation infrastructure for six of London’s downstream bridges: London, Southwark, Millennium, Blackfriars, Waterloo and the Golden Jubilee Footbridges which run each side of Hungerford rail bridge.
Brand experience agency Innovision was commissioned by the GLA and the Mayor of London’s Office to create a scheme that celebrated the 2012 Olympic Games. The agency commissioned lighting designer Paul Cook who, following a detailed inspection of each bridge, proposed a scheme that was sympathetic to the individual bridges, but synchronised every hour on the hour to produce a stunning light show.
Southwark Bridge © Louise Stickland
Cook said: “The colours and patterns of light that I used were strongly influenced by the Olympic brand documentation, enabling the lighting to link with all other celebratory decoration in both the London boroughs and across the nation. An individual lighting sequence was designed for each bridge, which came together as a synchronised light show and required an extremely accurate yet cost effective control system, plus the fixtures used had to be energy efficient.
“Although proposed as a temporary project, a closer look at the costs showed that some of the work required could be permanent and so provide a great legacy for this section of the Thames.”
Temporary planning permission was granted for the more dramatic parts of the installation, which featured additional elements such as a laser show of sporting images onto Waterloo Bride and ever-changing shard patterns of the fixtures installed on the Golden Jubilee Footbridge.
Golden Jubilee footbridges © Louise Stickland
Specialist lighting solutions company Architainment Lighting provided the technical services for a number of the bridges and also supplied a range of Philips Color Kinetics LED fixtures. London Bridge was fitted with 36 Philips Color Kinetics ColorBlast 12 Powercore XRE fittings, 12 on each of the two supporting piers and a further six on each bank. The arches of Waterloo Bridge were illuminated by four ColorReach and two ColorBlast LED fittings on each of the four piers, while the suspension wires and arms of the Golden Jubilee footbridges were fitted with Philips Color Kinetics ColorBurst fixtures. Architainment Lighting also provided technical support and wifi for all the bridges.
Blackfriars Bridge © Louise Stickland
Aquila Design installed their Neos 2 LED floodlights on Southwark and Blackfriars Bridges. Neil Arnold, lighting engineer with the City of London, tested numerous floodlights for the job and found that for these particular bridges, the Aquila Neos 2 LED floodlight was the only product with the size and distribution to achieve the solid colour they were after from a single unit. Aquila delivered the fixtures pre-wired with power and data to simplify the installation, which was invaluable because access to all the installations was often by boat!
Control was key to the realisation of Cook’s vision for the bridges and this was provided by Pharos LPCs throughout, with Pharos technicians undertaking the programming. Pharos also persuaded 13 riverside landmarks to co-ordinate their lighting with the bridges, seven of which were existing Pharos installations, including the London Eye, County Hall and the National Theatre. The project gained Pharos a further six clients, among them Tate Modern, HMS Belfast, the Globe Theatre and OXO Tower.
London Bridge © Louise Stickland
Waterloo Bridge © Louise Stickland