Technologies keep evolving at a relentless pace, opening the door to new products with lower energy consumption, less maintenance, and longer lifespan. While it may seem just perfect at first, I think this also brings new responsibilities for cities and organizations as the choices they make today will have a long lasting impact.
Nowadays, high quality luminaires last for long. For very long in fact, thanks to new technologies such as LED lighting, new paint processes, better components and materials, and more efficient heat management. Consequently, longer lifetime dictates choosing wisely when it comes to the style and design of a luminaire.
As cities strive to attract residents, investors, and visitors; as organizations and businesses do everything they can to get more clients and customers; as more and more projects apply for LEED credits and various environmental certifications, long-term planning is all the more relevant.
The buildings, the streets, the bridges, the parks, and most public places are designed to last and to harmonize with their surroundings. I think the same thinking process should be applied to lighting, because it is more than specs, performance, and durability. Lighting is also ambiance and personality. And knowing that a luminaire will be working perfectly and will also be looking good in 15+ years is what sustainability is all about. Styles come and go, but a design that’s integrated in its surroundings will last.
So I think cities, specifiers, engineers, and other lighting professionals need to make sure design figures amongst purchasing criteria. Maybe the citizens should have their say, too! How about a more interactive purchasing process?