Pharos controls new Vancouver landmark

Tuesday, 12 June 2012
Pharos controls new Vancouver landmarkVancouver's BC Place stadium (photo BC Place)
Canada - Home to Canadian Football League team BC Lions and Major League Soccer team Vancouver Whitecaps FC, Vancouver's BC Place stadium is a premier venue. It has hosted appearances from such iconic figures as Pope John Paul II, Madonna, Michael Jackson and, of course, Winter Olympic athletes.

Following a major upgrade, BC Place has become a new landmark of Vancouver's skyline and a place of pride for all British Columbians, due in no small part to the new lighting effects system, which not only adds to the stadium architecturally but also allows BC Place to 'come alive' both inside and out.

Controlling this new and sophisticated integrated lighting system, which utilises energy-efficient LED fixtures from Lumenpulse, is a Pharos LPC 60 programmed with the Pharos Designer software, enabling displays of a vast array of static or moving colour designs on the exterior and interior of the stadium. More than nine acres of roof, clear façade panels on the side of the building and the roof's support masts all provide an incredible canvas for displays of both static and dynamic lighting, with more than 26,000 individual programmable lighting elements.

As a stadium with two 'home' teams, BC Place needed to feel different for both, so part of the brief for lighting designers C M Kling & Associates was the ability to completely transform the building depending on which team was playing. Colour and sequenced lighting now creates identifiable signature scenes for each.

Other features include gradually-moving, abstracted, colour changing content on the façade in tandem with fixed roof colours. These shows are scheduled before and during the games and are paced so as not to distract the audience or players. When a team scores, a series of dynamic, fast-paced sequences are triggered, some of which also interact with the audience as they participate in activities like 'The Wave'.

Jim Anderson, Lumenpulse's director of application engineering, says, "For my part, the power of the Pharos LPC, the ease of specification, installation, setup and programming, as well as the Pharos customer support throughout the project, are what made the difference. With 51 universes and 216 separate Art-Net nodes we needed the horse power of the LPC 60. During my testing, it was easy to map and create impressive effects quickly."

Steve Bedford at EOS Lightmedia, who is responsible for programming the light shows, adds, "Pharos Designer and the LPC 60 gave me a stable and reliable platform from which to realise this large scale, high profile project.

"The LED installation at BC Place is unique in that the light shows and effects are simultaneously visible from the interior and exterior. The final installation is both a scripted part of the ticketed experience and a high profile architectural installation. The flexible interface and control options allow fine-tuned cues to be executed by lighting consoles for big budget halftime shows and by scorekeepers for touchdowns and crowd messages, while allowing building systems to handle the necessary architectural commands and astronomical automation.

"The interface has enabled me to manage and create content to effectively brand the stadium, the two professional sports franchises that call the stadium home, as well as the events and trade shows. The Pharos team provided brilliant and effective troubleshooting and support, particularly given that this project used a new LED product: everyone was extremely quick and effective in providing support for integrating the system."

(Jim Evans)

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