NSW Roads and Maritime Services continue to install new Heritage style fittings onto Harbour Bridge. The fit of 160 of these uniquely designed LED fittings forms part of a program to restore the former look of the Bridge but using the latest in light source technology to achieve it.
Originally designed to create a sense of spectacle and a warm welcome to visitors upon their arrival in one of the world’s most majestic harbours, the Sydney Harbour Bridge was always conceived of being a balance of form and function; it was to be as impressive at evening as it would be during the day whilst always being functional as a transit route.
In 2013, a decision was made to restore the original vision of the bridges’ engineers and thus preserve the cultural significance of the Sydney Harbour Bridge whilst also providing effective lighting for modern day commuters to regulatory standards. Agreement was reached between the owners and managers of the bridge, the RMS (NSW Road and Maritime Services) and, the NSW Heritage Council (as the bridge is a heritage-listed structure) to resurrect the original bronze lanterns that were used to illuminate the bridge and walkways.
To create the exact lighting effect, as would have been seen in 1932, Gerard Lighting was given a carcass of the original Heritage fitting that was used to create a mock-up version. Made of acrylic panels and an LED module, Gerard Lighting customized a double sided 15 Watt LED luminaire to be seated inside each lantern. Producing a soft glow, the LED module is rated as maintenance free for 20 years and operates at a very low power consumption and is ultimately capable of delivering significant energy efficiency.
Gerard Lighting installed their high performance Sylvania StreetLED luminaires with aero screen fittings in the outreaches; the luminaires require minimal maintenance and are energy efficient. With the original street lights consuming 163 watts per outreach and the new LEDs per outreach now consuming 84 watts, there is an immediate an energy saving of 50%.
The reduced glare allows the general public to focus on the Heritage fitting while furthering the photogenic quality of the bridge. The new lanterns will hang off 140 original outreaches, all located in the exact place as they were when the Bridge was constructed.
New RoadLED LED luminaires are currently being added to each of the light arm structures and will provide functional lighting to AS 1158 standard. The RoadLEDs are currently being rolled out to the on ramp and off ramps of the bridge.