2012 Melbourne Design Awards

Key Dates

Lonsdale Street, Dandenong [DRAFT]


Project Overview

Central Dandenong has a unique cultural richness, a dynamic produce market, performing arts precinct and distinctive retail sector, yet the economic decline of the city over many years, took its toll on the overall civic character and public realm experience.

The aspiration was to recreate Lonsdale Street, between Foster and Clow Streets, as a major boulevard exemplifying design excellence and renewing a sense of civic pride for the community of Dandenong.

Electrolight designed the lighting to the entire precinct including a custom lighting feature installed in the central median of Lonsdale Street in collaboration with artist David Sequeira. Our aim was to create an iconic feature that metaphorically represented the range of cultures in arguably one of Australia’s most culturally diverse regions.

Project Commissioner

Places Victoria

Project Creator



BKK Architects
TCL - Landscape Architects
Arup - Civil and Services engineers
David Sequeira - Artist
City of Greater Dandenong

Project Brief

The brief called for Lonsdale Street to be redesigned to create a major boulevard with a pedestrian focus, exemplifying design excellence and renewing a sense of civic pride for the local community.

Project Need

The lighting design employed a visual language of pattern and play that contributes to the unique character of the precinct in a vocabulary that is consistent across the site and easy to engage with. We aimed for a detailed, multilayered scheme that would be completely integrated with the landscape design and assist the public to a richer understanding of precinct.

A central lighting feature was employed to create a dramatic focus and entry sequence that spanned the entire 500m length of the project. A series of elegant, custom-designed light sticks were employed along the spine of the street which responded to the regular rhythm set by the road and intersection arrangement.

Working with artist David Sequeira, a full colour spectrum was chosen that represented the cultural
diversity of the city. The installation acknowledged the ‘gateway’ function of Lonsdale Street and the history of the precinct with a colonnaded rainbow that is both celebratory and ceremonial. Each light stick can be programmed to provide a unique complement to specific civic events and occasions.

‘Gateway’, as titled by David Sequeira, is very present during daylight hours so it was essential that the light sticks were designed to be just as effective as urban markers when switched off.

Design Challenge

Electrolight’s lighting design for the Revitalising Central Dandenong Project provides for both task and memorable experience through the delivery of a white light and feature lighting scheme that significantly enhances precinct prestige. The scheme lends a consistency and unification to the urban fabric whilst aspiring to high levels of energy efficiency. It is a design that has multiple aims and objectives which dovetail inextricably with those of the landscape and urban design.


The use of the Philips CosmoPolis lamp and Harvard electronic control gear in Schreder luminaires across the entire project allows for an aesthetic and appropriate lighting scheme to be provided with reduced energy costs, mercury use and maintenance cycles. The scheme meets the recommendations of AS/NZS 1158 for Category P6 and V3 and allows for substantial and measurable reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and near zero waste upward emission of light.

The Cosmopolis and LED scheme sets a benchmark in environmental performance for exterior lighting in Australia. The scale of this installation – the largest of its kind in the southern hemisphere – delivers significant environmental benefits and together with the custom feature lighting to the central median contributes to the environmental success of the overall project.


This award recognises best use of lighting design or effects in indoor or outdoor spaces.
More Details