The island of Jørpelandsholmen, situated just outside of Jørpeland in Strand Municipality, had prior to 2017 only been accessible by boat from the mainland. Historically used as farmland, but now disused, the municipality saw the untapped potential of the island as a recreational area for the residents of Jørpeland and a destination for the 200 000 + tourists visiting the nearby Pulpit Rock every year. A pedestrian bridge connecting the island to the mainland was established and landscape architect Anita Ellefsen Hus masterminded the new 2.1 km nature walk around the island including the establishment of destinations along the route and subtly adjusting the landscape to enhance views out from the island as well as making the path accessible to all.
Designing lighting for an island that had previously been unlit was a rare opportunity to explore how little light one needs to see and to make the experience of the walk truly magical.
A year after the nature walk opened Light Bureau was approached to design a lighting scheme for the path. Designing lighting for an island that had previously been unlit was a rare opportunity to explore how little light one needs to see and to make the experience of the walk a truly magical experience after dark. In close collaboration with the municipality Light Bureau developed a design where the artificial light would balance visually against the night sky so that views out across the fjord could be maintained, avoid all glare and keep the light levels low so that the night vision of people using the nature walk would remain intact.
Realizing that most standard luminaires have been designed for bright urban environments and would be overpowering in an otherwise dark, natural environment, Light Bureau decided to develop a family of bespoke fixtures suitable for low light areas with a reduced light output and very well shielded light sources. The luminaires had to withstand the harsh salt water environment of the island, frequent rainfall, the grazing sheep maintaining the landscape and kids playing on the island. Corten steel was the material of choice due to its robust qualities and natural patina that would blend in and be complementary to the natural environment both during day and night time.
Wanting to invest back into local businesses, the design team and client unanimously agreed that the bespoke luminaires should be manufactured by local craftsmen.
One could feel that the local community took great pride in the island and, wanting to invest back into local businesses, the design team and client unanimously agreed that the bespoke luminaires should be manufactured by local craftsmen. Mechanical workshop Tau Mekaniske and electrical contractors at Ryfylke Elektriske were selected to manufacture and install the bespoke luminaires using certified and rated miniature luminaires from Mike Stoane Lighting as light sources. The bespoke fixtures were designed as a family of four products, each would perform a different task: path lighting, illuminating tree canopies, vertical structures (cliff walls/building remains) and lighting to sculptures. The luminaires were designed in a bollard style to keep light sources below eye height in order to avoid glare, but out of the ground to reduce the risk of water ingress.
Rigorous testing and multiple on-site mockups were done in order to ensure that sufficient light levels were achieved to make the path and key landscape features legible, without disturbing the night vision of people using the space. Observers of different age groups and genders took part in the light tests and discussed the perceived brightness of the lighting design. The result from the tests were that low power and well shielded light sources could be used in all luminaires. The path lighting bollards required no more than 4.2 watts of power in total and gave light to the path itself, but also to the landscape immediately adjacent to the path making better legibility to the surroundings of the path. Bollards for uplighting trees and cliff walls were designed to use two adjustable light sources with anti-glare optical accessories each light source required 2 watts of power.
The restrained use of light have resulted in a low power consumption. It is estimated that the lighting for the path 2.1 km path uses 575 W in its dimmed state, less than 0.3W per meter.
In addition to the bespoke luminaires that illuminate the majority of the nature walk, tree mounted spotlights were used to accent key, but otherwise inaccessible parts of the landscape and post top luminaires, in a dimmed down state with very good glare rating, illuminated areas of the path surrounded more densely by trees. The restrained use of light have resulted in a low power consumption. It is estimated that the lighting for the path 2.1 km path uses 575 W in its dimmed state, less than 0.3W per meter.
The end result is a nature walk that feels like an enhancement of nature, lovingly tailored for use by people.
Client: Strand Municipality
Landscape architect: Anita Ellefsen Hus
Electrical engineer: Ekrheim Elconsult
Electrical contractor: Ryfylke Elektriske