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​National Mall LED Lighting

Goal: Continue to support the Trust for the National Mall’s commitment to sustainability by providing enhancements to the National Mall with a low maintenance, color-consistent, energy efficient lighting retrofit for the green space that preserves the application’s historic integrity
Products Installed: 174 D6 Area Lighting LED Retrofit Kits
Annual Savings: Annual energy savings (kWh) = 77,500 kWh
Annual energy savings (%) = 65%
Annual CO2 emissions savings = 188,480 lbs

The Situation

In 2001, OSRAM SYLVANIA donated a complete lighting retrofit for the Jefferson Memorial to The Trust for the National Mall. A significant portion of the project installed LED lighting, a landmark opportunity for solid state lighting (SSL) technology to demonstrate its viability for many different kinds of applications. Now, ten years later, the same LEDs installed are still shining down on the effigy of the third President of the United States, showcasing the same color-consistency and bright white light as they did a decade ago.

In November of 2010, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar signed the Record of Decision for the National Mall Plan – a comprehensive blueprint for the restoration and improvement of the park. One of the key provisions in the Plan calls for the National Mall to be a “model of cleanliness and sustainable practices.”

Throughout the Mall – the area of the National Mall between 3rd and 14th Streets - a mix of high intensity discharge (HID) and compact fluorescent (CFL) technology illuminated the walkways of the park, creating color inconsistencies and maintenance irregularity. The goal was to improve sustainability as well as the aesthetics of the Mall’s lighting, providing a better lit, more welcoming and secure atmosphere for visitors after dark with minimal impact on the historical architecture of the space.


The Solution

The light given off by the previous mix of HID and CFL lamp technology had wide color discrepancy, creating a splotchy and mismatched appearance across the park. The ideal solution would create consistent, white light that also improved the efficiency of the overall system. Building off of a decade-long partnership based on the work done at the Jefferson Memorial, and sharing the National Park Service and Trust’s commitment to sustainability, OSRAM SYLVANIA donated more than$100,000 worth of LED lamps to relight the Mall in the most efficient way possible while preserving the historic integrity of the original Olmsted light fixtures.

“We are honored to light our nation’s front lawn with innovative and cutting edge LED technology developed and assembled here on U.S. soil,” said Rick Leaman, President and CEO, OSRAM SYLVANIA. “To be a part of the solution that provides a better, more illuminated and welcoming atmosphere, secure for Mall visitors after dark for years to come.”

SYLVANIA used its LED Retrofit Kit for Outdoor Area Lighting: an LED lighting system that is a more efficient alternative to conventional light sources, like HID lamps, traditionally used in street and area lighting applications – the perfect solution for the Mall’s needs. By standardizing on the SYLVANIA LED Retrofit Kit, the Mall is now illuminated in color-consistent, bright white light that is evenly distributed to the pathways and green space below. Additionally, because of the directional nature of LED light, there is limited light trespass thus reducing light spill into the sky above the fixtures, as was the case with the previous lamps.

“The National Mall plan calls for ‘sustainable, yet respectful enhancements’ to the park,” said Caroline Cunningham, President of the Trust for the National Mall. As such, it was important to maintain the historic architectural integrity of the original lamp fixtures that line the park. Because the SYLVANIA LED Retrofit Kit does not require new construction, it fit into the Mall’s existing cast iron light fixtures, eliminating the need for new construction and preserving the historic fluted bronze streetlight posts that support the fixtures.


The Product

The LED Retrofit Kit for Outdoor Area Lighting is suitable for college campuses, industrial parks, city street lighting, parking lots and many other outdoor lighting applications. The retrofit replaces less efficient technologies with an LED light source, improving the application by providing a better lit more welcoming and secure atmosphere for people after dark. LED Retrofit Kit systems are designed for maximum long-term performance, low cost operation and ease of installation all without having to replace an entire fixture; the kit can be easily installed into a wide variety of outdoor fixtures.

The revolutionary system from OSRAM SYLVANIA uses only 55 watts of power to deliver bright white light only where needed, minimizing light trespass and disruption to an application’s surroundings and neighbors. They convey the aesthetic appeal universities, municipalities and similar institutions strive for, while providing an environmentally preferable solution that offers substantial energy savings and dramatic improvements in light quality.


The Green Effect

By retrofitting the outdoor lighting of the National Mall, the Trust drastically reduced its energy consumption from lighting. The LED installation is saving the Mall 77,500 kWh per year and associated power plant emissions of 188,480 lbs. of CO2.  The associated pollution savings from this project are comparable to the emissions from 6,132 gallons of gas.  The Trust’s partnership with OSRAM SYLVANIA and the manufacturer’s donation of outdoor LED lighting solutions has helped the park become greener and build towards the sustainability goals prescribed in National Mall Plan.

“The National Mall Plan calls for the National Mall to be a ‘role model in sustainable urban park development’,” said Bob Vogel, the Superintendent of the National Mall and Memorial Parks.  “Our partnership with the Trust, and the generosity of their private-sector partners, has allowed us to take a significant step in that direction.”


The Bottom Line 

The retrofit of the National Mall’s existing lighting system with the OSRAM SYLVANIA LED Retrofit Kit for Outdoor Area Lighting increased energy efficiency and reduced the maintenance costs associated with keeping the park illuminated, while increasing brightness and safety. The LED solution also created the desired color-consistent aesthetic in the park without needing to replace the historic lampposts and fixtures that stand watch over the Mall.

“OSRAM SYLVANIA has been incredibly generous for over a decade in helping us bring efficient and beautiful light to the parks and monuments we maintain,” recalls Vogel. “This project was no different. The SYLVANIA solution was totally in line with our sustainability initiatives, and we didn’t have to compromise on aesthetics.”

The installation of 174 D6 Area Lighting LED retrofit kits across the park was completed in early December 2011, enabling the Mall to achieve its desired energy-efficiency and aesthetic goals.

The lamps are already helping the Mall reduce energy consumption from lighting by sixty-five percent, and because the OSRAM SYLVANIA LED solution has a rated lamp life of 50,000 hours, – roughly double that of HID lamps – the Mall will see reduced maintenance and replacement costs over the life of the LEDs as well.