Project team:
Client: ProRail and the town of Zutphen
Architects, Marstunnel: Railinfra Solutions – Mari Baauw
Architects, Kostverloren underpass:
Maurer United Architects – Marc Maurer
Light artist: Herman Kuijer;
Technical support: De Kruijter Public Lighting
Custom luminaire: Design & Create

20. May 2016

Two tunnel lighting installations in  Zutphen/NL.

Text: Joachim Ritter

Photos: Jannes Linders

The Dutch are not necessarily known worldwide for tunnel building. As a rule, all they need to organise across their modest stretch of flat land are a few underpasses under the rivers. What they are good at, though, is applying modern lighting solutions in these very underpasses. There are a number of highly interesting examples of applications that demonstrate how dingy and/or technical looking underpasses can be transformed into HCL-rated projects, provided the term HCL is not confined to biorhythms and shifts in colour temperature.


Countries that feature mountainous terrain inevitably have to build tunnels. Cities with main roads opt to construct underpasses to ensure pedestrians can make their way through the town without having to cross roads with vehicular traffic. But humans tend to have an issue about using tunnels and underpasses. Whether this is linked to our subconscious memories of our birth, or is a part of our innate fear of being trapped in a confined space with no escape remains to be seen. Designers involved in tunnel or underpass design have begun to demonstrate how helpful it can be to illuminate these confined spaces in an attractive, entertaining or even exciting way to help dispel fear and render the route not only manageable for the human psyche but possibly even the highlight of the day.[…]


The full version of the article can be found in PLD No. 101

Our PLD magazine app (iPad App Store) contains a media-enhanced version

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