How to apply LED lighting for brighter and safer indoor car parks.
User safety and security are the keywords for car parks. Location alone will not attract and retain users to a car park, particularly indoor car parks, where there is an element of entering the unknown. If a user perceives a threat to their personal or vehicle safety, they are unlikely to consider leaving their vehicle there. Car park operators must satisfy a user’s perceived safety expectations and comply with safety requirements to facilitate the movement of both pedestrians and vehicles.
Indoor car parks typically operate for long periods throughout the day and night, with some offering 24-hour facilities. By their nature they offer limited natural daylight, resulting in high operating and energy costs.
Usage patterns of a car park can also vary greatly, from peak times of arrival/departure for work or leisure activities to much quieter periods where it would be a phenomenal waste of energy, increased cost and environmental impact, if services were to run constantly.
Lighting to guide
Lighting plays a huge role in creating the desired ambience and feelings of security in a car park. Once inside and safely parked, it is important for users to easily recognise emergency and way finding information.
Lighting for security
High vertical illuminance should be considered to increase recognition of people’s faces and the feeling of security. A well-lit car park can also help towards reducing criminal activity and aids the effectiveness of CCTV.
Lighting to highlight
The chosen scheme should eliminate shadows by providing clear visibility and bright spaces at key areas such as pay stations, ticket barriers and stairwells.
Questions to consider when choosing your luminaire for an indoor:
- Will the luminaire provide enough light on the various surfaces and structure of the car park to eliminate shadows and a gloomy environment?
- Are there suitable options to ensure emergency, wayfinding and structural hazards are clearly marked to allow users to travel via the optimal and safest route?
- Is the luminaire efficient?
- Does the luminaire have a low power consumption and high efficacy rating to help lower energy bills and C02 emissions?
- Is there a way to further reduce energy usage with the use of a controls system that optimises light output dependent on daylight and occupancy/ usage of the car park?
Further recommendations and guidelines for transit areas and carparks, can be found in the European lighting standard, EN 12464-1 Lighting for indoor workplaces.
Download our handy Application Lighting Guide – Indoor Car Parks here.