The street lighting renovation of the residential area of the Expo Village in Wavre (Belgium) had to go through more thought that the simple renewal of luminaires. Naturally, in a context of sustainable development, the primary objectives are to reduce energy costs and CO2 emissions. Other considerations are also taken into account such as the reduction of light pollution that negatively impacts our ecosystem. This requires dynamic management of urban street lighting. Last but not least, by enrolling in the digital age and the concept of Smart City, the City of Wavre has definitely shown its intention not to confine itself to traditional solutions. The project aims to demonstrate the interest of the public lighting network to manage a range of services linked to traffic and road sign management, maintenance, etc.
The City of Wavre has chosen an evolutionary technology, “Smart Lighting System” of SmartNodes (www.smartnodes.be). This technology meets the dynamic management objectives by giving “the light where and when needed and at the right level of illumination” and allows the exchange of information through its intelligent and communicating modules.
The project is part of a futuristic vision of a Smart City based on its public lighting network widely deployed on its territory. By combining dynamic management of this lighting with use of the lighting network to convey some information, the project is linked to different thematic “Smart Cities”:
- Economy: energy performance of the solution without sacrificing the comfort and safety of users but all of this infrastructure contributes to the collection and sharing of data necessary for the control of the city. The solution allows to adapt the resources closer to the needs and better control and budgets;
- Environment: reduction of CO2 emissions and reduction of light pollution;
- Mobility: traffic management through better adapted to traffic statistics gathered, preventive signaling based traffic and faster response in case of need;
- Governance: resource management and use of information and communications technology (ICT);
- Human capital: a mobile user and interactive relationship without sacrificing visual comfort and safety;
- Housing: a better balance between the need for urban lighting and the respect of a nightlife of biodiversity but also the need for harmony and aesthetics of lighting in the urban landscape.
The project of the City of Wavre was also inspired the objectives of the European Commission described in its June 2013 « Lighting the cities – Accelerating the deployment of innovative lighting in European cities”.
The participatory nature of the project is planned after the renovation phase of the lighting in the residential area of the Expo Village:
- Technology is configurable (level and duration of illumination, etc.). It will be proposed citizen marches and roundtables to assess, validate or modify these settings. It will be essential to unite the population of these neighborhoods or street in this new type of intelligent lighting.
- The technology is scalable. An exchange of views will also be offered to a group of residents to explain the new services related to smart lighting, uses and interests for the community but also for the inhabitants themselves.
In summary, a participating nature project, not around a concept, but a practical and experimental realization. Demonstrations of new intelligent and interconnected lighting technology is required to demonstrate explicitly the potential benefits which the city of Wavre benefit by enrolling in the concept of Smart City.
The reflection at the Régie d’Electricité de Wavre (“REW”) commissioned by the City of Wavre took several months. There was a need to learn about available technologies, to understand, to prepare specifications and to launch a tender. After contract award, the various stakeholders, namely the integrator, the installer, the pole supplier, the luminaires provider and the provider of the intelligent modules (www.smartnodes.be) were associated by the REW at several preparatory meetings to coordinate the work. All the preparatory work took a year and began in late 2013. The project is now in its implementation. The start took place in early December 2014 and should be completed by June 2015. A first test on part of the site was demonstrated in April 2015. A first impact assessment is planned in the course of 2015 and will be monitored by the REW but also the different proje ct stakeholders.
Contact person: Jean BEKA