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"Points of Light" for Port Angeles, Victoria, British Columbia
The Olympic Peninsula Hub

HBB Landscape Architecture
Writing credits: Dean W. Koonts, ASLA; Principal, and Rachel Dotson, Senior Associate, HBB Landscape Architecture



This is the view of the upper tier and streetscape of the downtown Victoria, British Columbia waterfront esplanade, showing the alternating rain garden bays and parking (right) and the ferry pier in the background left. The LED columns on the brushed stainless steel bases are the eye-catching light elements along the waterfront. LED BEGA 2916 wall lights in the concrete seat walls also illuminate the paving (see bottom photo).
Photo (C) 2017 Doug Scott

As a gateway to the Olympic National Forest and to Victoria, Canada, Port Angeles is an important hub connecting northern Olympic Peninsula communities. Much of Port Angeles' civic, historic, cultural and economic identity is tied to its downtown waterfront. The steady stream of commuters, visitors and outdoor enthusiasts arriving at the waterfront by way of ferry, the Olympic Discovery Trail and the U.S. scenic route 101 were the driving force behind the Waterfront Transportation Improvement Plan (WTIP), a master planning effort to revision Port Angeles' downtown infrastructure and public spaces.


The LED streetlights on 30' stainless steel poles combine classic design and low-energy consumption. The single bracket configuration lights the parking area and street with a lens that distributes light with a range of photometric solutions to provide appropriate ambiance for roadways.
Photo (C) 2017 Doug Scott

HBB was part of the multidisciplinary team of planners, engineers, architects and artists focused on developing the WTIP. The final plan distinguishes the waterfront as the focal point of the downtown core, integrating art with civic pride and stimulating economic development and property improvements. The WTIP involoved extensive public participation to identify common goals and program elements, including public access and views to the harbor, wayfinding, welcoming visitors, venues for seasonal activities, encouraging economic development and incorporating sustainable design.



Trail markers and portholes embedded every 20' in the concrete consist of internally-reflective blocks of blue-green fused glass backed in metal foil. The glass and metal trail markers were designed by local artist Laura Allisane. The design motifs include starfish, clamshells and snail shells to emphasize the waterfront route of the Olympic Discovery Trail.
Photo (C) 2017 Doug Scott

As a framework for future design, the concept of "Points of Light" emphasizes lighting and light fixtures as the main project component. Intended to create a distinct waterfront identity during the day and a unique attraction at night, lighting is used at focal points, as accents, for wayfinding and as artistic design elements. Not only special street light fixtures, but lighting in the form of columns, railings, pedestrian lights and bollards are all used to connect the many built phases of the project. From the multitiered sidewalk/esplanade running the length of the downtown waterfront to the Waterfront Park with its beaches and wind turbines that generate power for the city, the distinctive light fixtures provide the "points" within the comprehensive lighting system to emphasize wayfinding and the downtown core.


In addition to the light columns and 39-watt bollards along the upper tier of the waterfront esplanade are glass panels at the view platforms to block the strong harbor winds. Translucent photographs of the sky over the harbor are laminated into the glass panels. The windscreens visually capture the variable light and the colors of the changing skies throughout the day. Aluminum and wood slated benches are among the seating opportunities along the esplanade.
Photo Courtesy of LMN Architects

The esplanade's lower tier was designed with cantilevered metal grates, allowing visitors to observe the changing water levels below, providing light to the rock crab habitat and minimizing the uplifting wave stress from winter storm surges. The lower tier transitions to the upper esplanade through a series of precast concrete seating terraces faced with glazed, color tiles and integrated precast concrete stairs. The main lighting feature that provides structure to the design are a series of vertical, pedestrian Nemo Columns by Shreder Lighting. Occurring at the transition point between lower and upper-tiers, the light columns visually break up the horizontal planes of the esplanade, while also complementing the linearity of the design elements. The light columns are low-voltage LEDs with stainless-steel bases. As a complement to the Nemo Column lights, 39-watt 'Nemo' lighted bollards demarcate the upper edge of the esplanade and provide accent lighting. Wagner 'Lumenrail' series fixtures provide integral LEDs in the stainless-steel handrails at all stair locations. The street is illuminated with decorative streetlights by Shreder on 30 foot stainless steel poles that are designed to visually recede and complement the lighting in the pedestrian spaces.


The lower tier transitions to the upper esplanade through a series of precast concrete seating terraces faced with glazed, color tiles and integrated precast concrete stairs. The stainless steel handrails for the stairs between the upper and lower tiers of the esplanade incorporate 'Lumenrail' LEDs. Sections of the esplanade's lower tier cantilever over the rocky shoreline, an architectural design to mitigate storm surges, but also to give visitors a view of the rock crabs and tidal action.
Photo courtesy of LMN Architects

The waterfront park continues the "points of light" concept, bringing the pedestrian-scale light fixtures from the esplanade into the park open spaces, signaling that the space is less urban and moving toward a more natural landscape. LED BEGA 8060 bollards line and demarcate the waterfront trail that passes through the park and along two created beaches. These also provide wayfinding as they alternate with historic timeline markers. The park's hardscape plaza integrates LED BEGA 2916 wall lights into the concrete seating walls that illuminate the circular patterns in the paving.


These tall structures are high-tech stainless steel wind turbines ('Visionair5' by Urban Green Energy International Ltd.) that help generate power for the waterfront's lighting. The turbines are described as "more quiet than a human whisper."
Photo (C) 2017 Doug Scott

Complete Team List
Planning: Studio Cascade
Permits: Shreffler Environmental
Landscape Architect: HBB Landscape Architecture
Civil Engineer: Zenovic & Associates, Inc.
Architect: LMN Architects
Electrical Engineer: Sazan Group
Coastal Geologist: Coastal Geologic Services Inc.
Geotechnical: Hart Crowser, Inc.
Artists: Ellen Sollod and Laura Allisane
Structural Engineer: KPFF Consulting Engineers
Construction Management: Vanir Construction Management
General Contractor: Primo Construction


The multiphase design created a series of public spaces unified by a "points of light" concept that included 54-watt Luminis Eclipse LED column lights for the Waterfront Park events space that emphasize the gathering lawns and bring the scale down to the pedestrian level.
Photo (C) 2017 Doug Scott

As seen in LASN magazine, April 2018.

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