Ronstan Tensile Architecture’s Catenary Lighting System has transformed the Rundle Mall Precinct, creating safer streets for the people of Adelaide and ensuring economic viability for businesses by activating the now well-lit public space.
Since completion of its redevelopment in 2013, the Rundle Mall Precinct in Adelaide sees up to 400,000 visitors weekly and has successfully re-established its position as the heart of South Australian retail; a hub for fashion, beauty, lifestyle and food in the City of Adelaide. Bound by North Terrace, King William Street, Grenfell Street and Pulteney Street, the precinct has Rundle Mall as its centrepiece.
One of the final elements transforming the mall was the removal of street poles, opening the mall out with lighting provided by a catenary lighting system suspended predominantly from the surrounding buildings. Architects, Hassell, assisted by Arup, designed a cable net that was refined, manufactured and installed by Ronstan Tensile Architecture.
Due to the presence of heritage listed buildings at either end of the Mall dating to 1896, one of the changes Ronstan introduced was to anchor the net at either end from decorative masts, each lighting the mall entrances and welcoming visitors without disrupting the heritage site. The linear grid catenary beyond provides a subtle light allowing the lighting designers to play with mood and to create a unique and welcoming atmosphere.
Catenary lighting is based on the ethos of “less is more”. The cables allow light to be focussed in areas that need it, leaving other places in darkness and building character, something conventional lighting struggles to achieve. In this way, people can be guided to safer areas, with light spill reduced to minimise light pollution and energy consumption.
Ronstan Tensile Architecture understands stainless steel cables, cable grids, nets and structures. Ronstan’s dedicated team are experts at the implementation of complete catenary lighting systems that complement the surrounding architecture.
The timelapse video shows how the outdoor expansion of the Rundle Mall activates the area with Ronstan's Catenary Lighting System.