Lighting brand new paths
Where Naval air fields and military buildings once stood, a 1.5-square-mile community has formed in the Village of Glenview, Ill. Supported by a master plan and design guidelines that specify everything from allowable property densities to lighting fixtures, “The Glen” has turned abandoned property into an activity hub for families and businesses.
The Glen, located 20 miles north of downtown Chicago, began taking shape in 1993 when the Department of Defense announced it would shut down the Glenview Naval Air Station as part of that year’s round of base realignments and closures. In the next few years, a multi-jurisdictional team crafted a land use plan for the property to identify the goals for the redevelopment project. “We created a set of design guidelines for the master plan [that described for] each section — whether it was residential, retail or commercial/industrial — what the intent of the property was, what the intent of the density was, what the intent of the setbacks were, what the roads should look like,” says Amy Ahner, assistant director of capital projects and planning. “These standards went out to the market saying, ‘This is what we want; this is the quality of architecture; this is the quality of materials; these are the types of densities; this is what we’re looking for.’ [Developers] had to respond with proposals that met those guidelines.”
The specifications identified designs for light fixtures that would be appropriate for a variety of settings, including parking lots, residential neighborhoods and parks as well as along major. The fixtures were manufactured specifically to meet the village’s needs by Roselle, Ill.-based Sternberg Lighting. “We wanted particular aesthetics, we wanted particular design goals, particular maintenance goals,” Ahner says. “We gave developers a choice: if they wanted to use a different type of lighting, they were welcome to do that, but then they were required to have the homeowners associations maintain them.”
For parking lots and golf courses, the village chose 20-foot-tall, green tapered poles with simple bases and candy cane-shaped arms to hold lights that aim directly downward. For the town center, designers called for pedestrian-scale lights with 16-foot-tall, green fluted poles, straight arms with decorative filigrees for lights, arms from which to hang decorative seasonal banners and acorn-shaped speakers for piped-in music. Shapes and sizes of lights that could be used along sidewalks, and lights for park pathways were specified, as were guidelines for spacing.
Village designers worked with crews from the Public Works Department’s Streets Division to choose the fixtures and include details that will ease maintenance activities. “They had significant input in where the hatches were, how the wiring was done, how they wanted it wired out in the field and where they wanted their controller boxes placed so they can shut off a certain segment of lights if they have to do maintenance,” Ahner says. “The manufacturer, the designers as well as the field people really worked collaboratively to produce the right product for Glenview.”
The Glen’s final streetlights were installed last spring, and since then, the Glenview Police Department has installed 20-foot-tall candy cane-shaped parking lot lights at its new headquarters. So far, with the development 90 percent complete, the village has spent approximately $1.5 million on lights throughout the community.