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Shedding Light on the Hedley District

Lighting Research Center

Shedding Light on the Hedley District

Led by Lighting Designer and Adjunct Professor Patricia Rizzo, Rensselaer’s Lighting Research Center (LRC) is working closely with a Latham-based developer to shed some new light on the Collar City.

In March, First Columbia announced plans to revitalize a 25-block area along Troy’s waterfront bordered by Federal Street to the south and Jay Street to the north. Called “The Hedley District,” the redevelopment project seeks to introduce a hotel, a pedestrian walkway along the Hudson River, a parking garage, and residential and commercial space into the area.

The LRC has been tapped to develop the lighting master plan for the redeveloped Hedley District — which Rizzo says is slated to include white and colored light-emitting diodes (LEDs), metal halide lamps, and some theatrical lighting, among other light sources.

“Our focus is on energy-efficient, sustainable lighting that is low maintenance and carries a cohesive theme all the way through the district’s old and new architecture,” says Rizzo. “This is a prime opportunity for Rensselaer’s Lighting Research Center to help give the Hedley District a new identity through the impact of lighting.”

Some of the LRC’s initial ideas have included custom street light fixtures that visually represent Troy’s nickname by featuring LED-lit “collars” of different colors; LED-lined light fixtures with the capability to change color depending on the direction of the wind at various areas along the riverfront promenade; a rhythm of blue lights that “dot” the water as they project from the river wall; and distinct fixtures at each of the four portals entering the district to welcome visitors.

The LRC also will be relighting the facades of the Hedley Park Place (pictured) and Flanigan Square buildings on River Street and has already begun to conduct a series of mock-ups (nighttime proof-of-concept trials) to test different lighting ideas at both locations.

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Rensselaer (ISSN 0898-1442) is published in Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter by the Office of Strategic Communications and External Relations, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY 12180-3590. Opinions expressed in these pages do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors or the policies of the Institute. ©2008 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.