On the Beam

September 1998


On the Beam

A store-lighting expert makes some illuminating observations

Nothing can make your store shine – or fade – as much as lighting. Ron Harwood, design director of Illuminating Concepts, Farmington Hills, MI, discussed that very topic during a seminar at the GlobalShop Show in Chicago this year.

  • In the coming years shopping malls will make greater use of outdoor lighting to draw attention to their architecture, the way big-city buildings do today. Harwood also thinks more malls will add parks and other outdoor rest/recreation areas.
  • Inside stores, there will be a shift away from the popular MR16 halogen lamps, which burn out quickly, he says. Look for metal halide, single-ended lamps to grow in importance. They're small, pack a wallop and give good color rendering, he says.
  • Computer-controlled dimming systems will become more common because they're good energy-savers and have fallen in price.
  • Color will become increasingly important in creating images for brands. Just as Coca-Cola "owns" a particular shade of red, other brands will lay claim to specific hues. To underline these brand identifiers, stores will make greater use of colored light in their displays.
  • Advances in fiber-optic lighting systems will make them practical for a greater number of retailers. One company, for example, is developing a fiber optic system that lessens the amount of light lost when the lighting cable is bent.



Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.


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