A downtown revitalization project in Muncie, Indiana, included the revamping and enlargement of a roundabout at Walnut and Seymour Streets. The center of the roundabout features an imposing statue called "The Passing of the Buffalo," the focal point of this location since 2007. Upon completion of the road work and landscaping, the city saw the opportunity to better showcase the sculpture with illumination.
The city approached electrical contractors KaRo, Inc to propose a solution, indicating that it hoped to avoid anything above ground, such as bollards or floodlights. The goal was to find a luminaire with a minimal presence that would be less susceptible to damage from lawn mowers and weed whackers as city workers completed regular maintenance and landscaping.
KaRo, Inc collaborated with John Edwards, specification sales at Light Source Indiana, to uncover the best lighting solution for the statue. Hydrel’s M9710C LED In-Grade luminaire was selected for the project.
Six luminaires are installed equidistant around the perimeter, each with a clear flat lens. Optical aiming with a wall wash distribution was chosen to highlight the monument’s textures and add depth to its features. A 4000K color temperature provides clean, clear lighting. The cool white light helps to create space and makes the sculpture appear crisp and modern.
The M9700C series offers Flow-Thru technology, incorporating underwater management technology with a modular design. The modular design, unique to Hydrel, combines a water-tight module and junction box. The Flow-Thru design of the housing starts at the rough-in sections and includes a molded junction box and holes at the bottom.
The design allows a pathway for water to flow through and run out of the bottom of the fixture. The result of the Flow-Thru design ensures peak performance of the in-grade and improves the life of the internal components.
With an IP68 rating, the commercial in-grade fixture is durable and sets the benchmark for water management performance, surpassing competitive best-in-class in-grade lighting.
"I'm told the city is very happy with the result," Edwards said. "I think the best lighting, performance and overall effects come from fixtures you can't see. The Hydrel luminaires offer a nice clean application, with no intrusive elements that would take your eyes away."
Discreet, long-lasting in-grade luminaires put the focus on statue at downtown roundabout
Project Name: Passing of the Buffalo Statue/Roundabout
Project Location: Muncie, Indiana, USA
Project Completion: September 2021
Electrical Contractor: KaRo, Inc
Agent: Light Source Indiana
Photography: Chris Whonsetler Photography