Transportation lighting continues to be a promising market for architectural lighting, especially for companies that have adapted entertainment lighting concepts to the architectural market. Such lighting is equipped to do much more than provide illumination and add to the architectural profile of the building. For example, there's the tram station in Grenoble, France, which has been outfitted with a pair of Martin Exterior 600 color-changing wash lights. The units are mounted in the station's ceiling and, when a train is not in the station, the units project white light. However, as a tram comes near, a sensor extends a signal to a Martin ProScenicum DMX512 lighting controller, which is located on-site, and the Exteriors switch to strobe. Then, as the tram comes into the station, the light turns blue. When the arrival is completed, the strobing stops and the light remains blue. As the tram pulls out of the station, the light turns progressively whiter, completing the cycle.

This unusual application could possibly be replicated in train, subway, and tram stations all over the world. Such an approach has many benefits, including keeping commuters aware of the transportation schedule and possibly even reducing crime in isolated venues. It will be interesting to see if other designers take up this idea.

In Grenoble, the LD for the installation was Pierre Negre.