Press Releases

A Dynamic New Visual Signature for Complexe Desjardins

A Dynamic New Visual Signature for Complexe Desjardins

Montréal, April 20, 2015

A new custom lighting design developed by Montreal based Lightemotion has made its mark in downtown Montreal. Working closely with the facilities team at Complexe Desjardins, Lightemotion has breathed new life into Montreal’s largest mixed use development, totaling 4 million square feet. Located in the Quartier Des Spectacles and facing the recently renovated Place Des Arts, featuring an innovative lighting scheme designed by Lightemotion, Complexe Desjardins is the latest addition to the Quartier to include a dynamic and innovative lighting design strategy

The client was interested in resolving numerous issues through a lighting design strategy for the interior retail concourse and two main entrances to the retail concourse. Lightemotion was selected to develop a distinctive new lighting scheme to create a warmer overall ambiance, be dynamic and programmable, reduce heating and cooling costs and produce a call to action from the street so pedestrians will enter the complex. One of the main features of the design is the ability for the client to create programmable and dynamic lighting effects that adapt to the time of day, season and activity within the space. Environmental sustainability was also paramount in the lighting program to reduce hydro consumption, cooling and maintenance costs.

We undertook an exhaustive research and mock-up program that recommended replacing the existing flood lights with a custom designed fixture. We conceived a bi-directional 140 watt LED lighting fixture that showcased the unique diamond coffered ceiling combined with a powerful down light to illuminate the entire shopping centre, adding much needed texture and nuance to the space. This also created unique floor pattern which enlivened the space enhanced intuitive wayfinding and also diminished the vastness of the space.

“This lighting system not only provides a warmer ambience, with pre-programmed lighting that changes over the course of the day, but it is 67% more economical than the previous system and provides triple the lighting intensity at floor level!” explains François Roupinian, the founder and president of Lightemotion.

Custom Lighting Solution: To create a lighting ambience that is both friendly and dynamic, Lightemotion conceived a bidirectional LED (light-emitting diode) lighting fixture that the Montreal company Lumenpulse developed for this project. Composed of two elements (a frame equipped with RGB LEDs and a downward-directed directional flood), this brand-new fixture both directs coloured light upward as well as directing lighting downwards towards the floor.

By installing one of these fixtures in each ceiling coffer, Lightemotion made it possible to create very subtle chromatic nuances that produce the effect of a path of colours covering the vault of the retail concourse. Outside, the marquees covering each of the building’s two entrances have also been provided with a lighting system that can project onto the ground a chromatic ambience creating a call to action to enter the retail concourse. The down lights provide 4 times more lux level than the previous fixtures while also creating a visually stimulating pattern on the floor eliminating the typical flat floodlight wash effect.

The Urban Clock: Since the Complex is both an event space and shopping centre, there was a mandate to ensure the new fixtures provided a wide range of visual options. After a careful study of the traffic patterns based on time of day and activity, we developed an “Urban Clock” concept which uses programmable DMX system to adapt the colours, tones, intensity and colour temperature. Mornings were a bright and energetic dynamic white scheme to help people start their day.

For the lunch time rush we added warm colour tones to provide a luminotherapy effect, especially in the darker fall and winter months, and at night we selected darker tones in blues and greens to create a relaxing ambience for shopping. The custom fixtures were also used outside at each of the build­ing’s entrances. By utilizing the same design principles and technologies as inside, the entrance lighting system projects onto the sidewalk creating a chromatic coloured am­biance which compliments the lighting display inside.

Environmental Stewardship: The lighting design does more than offer a daily show to visitors and a visual signature to Complexe Desjardins. It is also much more energy-efficient than the traditional 400-watt lighting fixtures that replaced. Using only 132 watts each, the new fixtures reduce energy consumption by 67%. Because they are also equipped with photoelectric cells, they are capable of automatically adjusting the lighting intensity and power consumption to compensate for the amount of natural light entering the concourse through two large curtain wall windows at each of the two main entrances

About Lightemotion

Founded in 2002 by Francois Roupinian, IALD, Lightemotion is an independent global lighting design consultancy that combines outstanding lighting design with technical excellence.

With a passion for theatre, an eye for great design and expertise in the latest technologies, François and his team have created the exterior and interior lighting solutions for an impressive roster of global projects. As creative director, François has directed over sixty projects in five continents, collaborating with award-winning firms in architecture, interior design and exhibit design within the cultural, retail, institutional, civic, master planning and hospitality sectors.

With his team of in-house lighting designers, theatre design experts, lighting engineers and interior architects, Lightemotion believes in a “design first” process. This approach has a proven track record of achieving clients’ design and business objectives, which are translated into a creative visual language that delivers cost-effective and environmentally sustainable lighting solutions. Lightemotion has enjoyed many accolades and has been published widely in leading international journals; selected publications include, Huffington Post, Canadian Architect, Architectural Record, Mondo Arc, Lighting Magazine, LD+A and Objekt.