Shopping Mall Interior Lighting Design

For a large number of people, shopping malls are not only a group of shops to buy goods but also public places where they can socialize. They are typical multi-functional destinations for regular meetings. To stand out, competing malls need to offer unique facilities and services or unique architecture. In this competition, lighting has the most significant role as an element that supports and enriches architecture.

Monday, November 9, 2020 - 07:49

For a large number of people, shopping malls are not only a group of shops to buy goods but also public places where they can socialize. They are typical multi-functional destinations for regular meetings. More than just a shopping center, they have now become  complete entertainment centers with restaurants, cafes, movie theaters, arcade games, bowling alleys, skating rinks, and many more entertainment venues. To stand out, competing malls need to offer unique facilities and services or unique architecture. In this competition, lighting has the most significant role as an element that supports and enriches architecture.

What are the lighting design goals in a shopping mall?

The first goal is to create a warm and memorable welcome and after the entrance comfortable atmosphere while ensuring a safe and efficient environment for the visitors.

While using light to enhance the architecture and to guide the visitors in the building, the designer should pay attention to not taking too much attention away from the shops.

Since light has not only the function of illumination but also affects  human psychology and satisfaction, interior lighting levels and light colors should be well balanced to ensure visitors stay longer, feel comfortable, and buy more.

Researches show that a massive purcentage of the energy used in buildings is for lighting. Energy consumption in shopping malls with huge volumes and numbers of the visitor  is a very critical issue. At that point to have optimized daylight as much as possible in public and socializing spaces will decrease consumption. But in the meantime, air circulation, humidity, greenhouse effect, and direct and indirect glare are also essential subjects while having natural light in the building.

How to illuminate shopping mall areas?

For leisure and shopping, there are various spaces in a shopping mall. Each of these requires  specific lighting solutions due to the architectural details and functions.

Before determining technical requirements, the lighting designer describes the look and feel of the space with storylines. This story comes from the architectural and interior concept and determines the lighting design. Visual fixtures such as pendants, wall sconces, dynamic lighting systems create the look and feel, lighting with downlights, hidden light lines provide lighting for general visual comfort and safety.

The design team has to work on each main area separately, which are;

  • Entrances
  • Circulation areas, corridors
  • Entertainment complex, food court, social areas
  • Atrium
  • Indoor parking areas
  • Elevators, escalators
  • Toilets
  • Service areas

and on the other hand, has to achieve complete balanced lighting since all the spaces are connected.

While the lighting level could be high to make the main entrances more attractive, the floor circulation areas should be designed considering that the showcase lighting from the stores will also contribute.

Rhythmic ceiling lights, such as downlights or linear lights along long corridors, give people a direction to follow. It is quite common to use wall sconces and hidden light lines for decoration purposes.

Since shopping centers have large square meters, the number of fixtures used or the length of the hidden light bands are also high. For this reason, it is necessary to place high-efficiency luminaires in an optimum way when energy saving is crucial. A large number of luminaires should be evaluated and selected in terms of ease of installation and maintenance.

In addition to general lighting in areas such as entertainment centers and food courts, dynamic lights and decorative fixtures could be installed  following the decoration to attract the attention of visitors.

The atriums under the skylights have the highest ceiling and large areas that visitors could perceive from every point of the shopping centers. Lighting systems should be installed, considering that there are places where intense natural light penetrates indoors. It is necessary to benefit from the lighting automation systems, especially in the atrium and surrounding circulation areas.

Atriums are also perfect spaces to celebrate events throughout the year. Dynamic lighting will support these events and drive more visitors.

To increase the quality of the indoor environment as in every project is the primary aim of shopping mall lighting design.

While moving towards this goal, the investor should understand the issue of sustainability and the benefits it will bring to the business and the environment and determine with the design team the concept of sustainability.

This article, which i wrote as a introduction to shopping mall lighting design, will be followed by my detailed articles about each space.

Sources:
https://www.arch2o.com/
https://www.lighting.philips.com/
https://schmitz-wila.com/
https://retaildesignblog.net/

Ayşe Özkiper
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After Notre Dame de Sion French High School, Ayşe Dilay Özkiper continued her education at the Istanbul Technical University and has been graduated as an Architect. She also graduated from her MBA at the Istanbul University Institute of Business Economics. She attended various workshops, formations, and schoolings on lighting design and technique. Özkiper spent the last 20 years of her 29-year professional career in the lighting sector with the expertise of architectural lighting and still continues as a lighting designer and consultant.

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