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Dark Sky Initiative for The Red Sea Project

The Red Sea Project is intended to become the largest certified Dark Sky Reserve in the world.
Amazing clear night shot of the milky way galaxy over a rocky hill

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Location

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Client

The Red Sea Development Company (TSRDC)

Cundall was engaged on this giga-project to develop a lighting strategy that provides enough lighting for safe movement, whilst meeting stringent International Dark Sky criteria. This never-before-accomplished Dark Sky certification sets a new benchmark within the industry. TRSDC is also seeking an accreditation that recognises areas with an exceptional quality of starry nights and a commitment to protecting the nocturnal environment.

Cundall’s role included surveying the existing lighting equipment and installation details on all assets throughout the Special Economic Zone (SEZ). These assets included building mounted general, feature, landscape and street lighting. The lighting design for each asset was reviewed against dark sky design criteria. This is considerably more onerous than current standards to deliver buildings that do not impact the brightness of the night sky, the appearance of darkness and wildlife.

Andrew Bissell, Director, commented "This unique project demonstrates that through ambition, careful coordinated design and a passion for the environment, new developments of an unprecedented scale can be built which protect the quality of the night sky. Achieving this will be the evidence that is needed to show that no building in any location whether that be rural, or a capital city need have an impact on the night sky."

Key fact

The Special Economic Zone is 28,000km2 with 160km of coastline and is equal to the size of Belgium.

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Key fact

All luminaires will be controlled using TRSDC’s smart controlled systems.

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Key fact

All light on buildings, paths and roads will have to be aimed downwards with controlled optics.

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Andrew Bissell in the office with black wooden interior background

Andrew Bissell

Director, Lighting Design

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One of the most interesting parts of this initiative is how adaptable controls are being planned, designed and implemented for the environment.

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