The new ‘intelligent’ lighting equipment will reduce both the building’s energy bills and its CO2 emissions.
Devised by Philips Electronics, the state-of-the-art LED system allows the historic building to be ‘washed’ in an almost infinite range of colours.
A total of seven iconic European buildings have been chosen to pioneer the new project using the ‘IntelliPower’ lighting equipment. Prior to the City Hall switch-on, the technology had been in use at only two other facilities – both in the US.
The new system will be used to help the city celebrate several events each year including St Patrick’s Day when the building will be coloured green, and the Twelfth of July when it will be illuminated orange and purple.
Among the handful of other dates being recognised are the Chinese New Year (red and yellow), Polish Independence Day (red and white) and Gay Pride (colours of the rainbow).
Speaking just prior to last night’s test, Alderman Robinson said it was a great opportunity from an environmental perspective – saving £14,000 on the council’s annual energy bill, and improving its carbon footprint through a reduction in CO2 production.
He said: “This is the same light system that is used on the Empire State Building, so it not only shows Belfast in a new light, but it puts us on the map with some of the most iconic buildings across the world. It will also deliver an annual reduction of almost 90 tonnes in CO2 emissions, realising half of the council’s annual emission reductions targets from this project alone.”
Funding from the European Union provided £200,000 of the installation’s £330,000 cost.