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Ridi achieves the Olympic standard

Olympic teams from around the world are training at the facilities at St Mary’s University College, where Ridi’s lighting has proved a winner.

Olympic teams from around the world are training at the facilities at St Mary’s University College, where Ridi’s lighting has proved a winner. Twickenham has long been the home of English rugby but this summer Olympic teams from China, Ireland, South Africa and Japan will be using the facilities at St Mary’s University College following the construction of a brand new state-of-the-art £8.5m sports centre. The new sports centre, officially opened by Lord Sebastian Coe, features energy efficient lighting controls and luminaires from Ridi Lighting. The new centre is sited on Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) and, as such, has to comply with stringent targets in sustainability, energy efficiency and renewables. The centre, along with the fully refurbished existing facilities, has since been awarded an ‘Excellent’ BREEAM rating, with 20% of its energy coming from renewable sources. The refurbishment and extension at the site is fully compliant with a number of sporting national governing body facility guidelines. The lighting scheme had to be designed to suit the requirements of a variety of sports so required an easy-to-use and programmable system. The Ridi system allows lighting scenes to be set on a court-by-court basis as well as integrating with the natural daylight from sun pipes in the roof and the natural ventilation turrets. This feature facilitates the elimination of daylight and air movement during play, which is especially important in a badminton set up. “The bookings can change from one hour to the next, for instance, in one slot there maybe netball and in the following slot it could be badminton, where the lighting levels need to be different,” comments Tish Jayanetti, sports facilities manager. “The ability to quickly switch between different lighting levels is very important for our operational staff as it allows us to provide a seamless, efficient and professional service.” The challenge of the lighting scheme was to realise ambitious energy-efficient designs while accommodating the aesthetic constraints of lighting an architecturally striking building. The Dali control system extends to all areas and features automated daylight dimming to harvest as much natural light as possible. This system also makes the scene setting extremely quick and intuitive, with the additional benefits of absence/presence detection. For luminaire specification, Dale Price of Michael Jones Associates opted for Ridi based on its ability to meet the differing architectural and practical demands of the complex. “We decided to use ABR Sport fittings from Ridi in the main hall as they can be mounted at a high level so offer no distraction to the athletes.” In the Fitness & Conditioning Suite, Price specified the U-Line luminaire which offers continuous runs of light and was able to accommodate the idiosyncratic fluctuations of the ceiling at the centre. “As well as the ability to fit into the interior, the U-Line luminaires eliminate any visible wiring – an important point when dealing with such a unique interior.” The finished project has created a perfect training base for the Olympic visitors but also a lasting legacy for the University College’s students, staff and local community.