In collaboration with the city of Sherbrooke and Commerce Sherbrooke, the «Objectif Ciel Étoilé» (Objective Starry Sky) project aims to make Boulevard Bourque into the first commercial area in Quebec to conciliate the needs of enterprises and the preservation of the night sky.
Make boulevard Bourque an exemplary road artery
With close to 170 000 citizens, Sherbrooke is by far the largest municipality of the entire Mont-Mégantic International Dark-Sky Reserve (MMIDSR).
It is unsurprising that the commercial activities taking place there cause a significant part of the region’s light pollution.
Sherbrooke’s commerce-dense Boulevard Bourque has an acute illumination impact, with a high concentration of enterprises with outdoor parking lots and lighted exterior display and storage areas.
Moreover, the closeness of the residential areas amplifies the impact on both the local quality of life and intrusive light problems.
However, it is possible to drastically reduce the negative impact and nuisance of light pollution by adequately applying the principles of good night lighting. Thanks to precise targeted interventions, enterprises and citizens will benefit from the implementation of night-lighting best practices by reducing excess lighting, blinding glare and energy wastage.
The project provides personalized advice for enterprises free-of-charge, including:
- eco-lighting consulting services
- on-site exterior lighting inventory
- lighting conformity assessment according to relevant applicable regulation,
- proposal of various replacement options for inadequate lighting
- showcasing participating companies as examples to the public.
The pilot project covers a 5 km length fo the boulevard, between Freeway 410 and Henri-Bourassa street.
Analysis of night-time satellite imagery coupled with visual and photographic surveys has identified this sector as a high impact zone regarding light pollution.
A notable amount of blue light-rich lighting is present. This colour has greater adverse effects on glare, sleep quality and night environment.
Not only will light pollution be reduced and the visibility of the night sky enhanced, citizens will benefit directly from the modernization of outdoor commercial lighting.
The use of downwards-directed, warm-colour lighting will reduce roadside glare. The harmonization of lighting levels and the better designed security lighting will enhance public safety. For nearby residences, a significant diminution of intrusive light nuisance will be observed.
Thanks to the support of the city of Sherbrooke and Commerce Sherbrooke, the consulting service is free of charge for the enterprises. Representatives from the Reserve can provide a detailed inventory of all exterior lighting, assess their regulatory conformity and calculate the potential energy savings.
Thanks to the numerous options available, proposals will be tailored to the specific needs of the companies while respecting the integrity of the night sky. Commerces using good lighting practices will be identified as «Ami du ciel étoilé».