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Gallery - Featured Project - Iowa State Prison
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The Featured Project page describes lighted environments where AGi32 has provided valuable design assistance. Our current Featured Project is the Iowa State Penitentiary lighting retrofit designed by Jason Odefey and Robert Hedgepeth of Brooks Borg Skiles Architecture Engineering.

Brooks Borg Skiles Architecture Engineering is an Iowa based AE firm with a staff of architects, interior designers, and mechanical, electrical and structural engineers. The firm has a 109 year history including projects for corporate and institutional clients. BBSAE undertook this project for the Iowa Department of Corrections in order to evaluate the cost of upgrading the existing lighting system. The completed study, comparing proposed vs. existing systems, will be used by the Department of Corrections to request project funding.

As the project commenced, BBSAE was utilizing a different lighting software package, but found the software could not model curved surfaces and therefore could not be used with the complicated geometry existing on this site. AGi32 became the lighting software of choice for two major reasons: its advanced modeling capabilities and speed of calculation. The general topography of the site was determined after several site visits were undertaken, and an initial topographic model was created.

AGi32’s advanced surface editing capabilities allowed the model to be created with the least number of surfaces for optimized calculation times. Single sided objects were used to model the elevation contours. Wherever possible, surfaces were removed from objects. Complex roof lines were easily created using AGi32’s building and object shapes.

During two visits to the site, actual footcandle measurements were taken at predetermined positions. Once the AGi32 model was complete and existing luminaires were added, calculation points were located at the actual measured positions. The model was calculated using photometrically accurate radiosity computations. The model was determined to be accurate when compared to the actual measured values.

At this stage, viewpoints were selected in the rendered environment to evaluate the site. Several views from the correctional officer tower locations were included, as these views were of importance in gauging the quality of visibility and uniformity of luminances in the upgraded lighting plan.

The base file was then modified to reflect the new lighting scenario. Most existing luminaire locations were removed and high mast lighting system was inserted in three locations. Roadway cutoff distribution luminaires were added to the top of the perimeter walls to supplement the high mast fixtures. These cutoff luminaires were chosen to minimize glare for correctional officers and improve the illumination of the walkway on top of the wall

The AGi32 model was recalculated with the new luminaires, and the calculation points and renderings compared. Using the existing base model for the redesign made this process quite simple, as the calculation point placement and the remaining existing luminaires were already located. A principal benefit came from having the same viewpoints already imbedded in each file. The existing and proposed viewpoints were exported as JPG image files. This made it very easy for the Owners to see the benefits of the new system. Another advantage of the versatility of the program’s viewpoint feature was demonstrated with an exported VRML model. All the embedded viewpoints are exported so a user can scroll thru the views, get to a desired viewpoint, and then explore the virtual reality model from that location.

AGi32 made very clear how the new lighting system will improve security at the penitentiary. It clearly shows how roof lines and security points are illuminated. The image files demonstrate how lighting uniformity is dramatically improved throughout the site making it easy for Iowa Department of Corrections to visualize the security enhancements achieved through a lighting upgrade.

Author: Jason Odefey can be reached at jodefey@rdgusa.com. Rendering completed while at Brooks Borg Skiles Architecture Engineering.

Renderings Copyright © 2004 Brooks Borg Skiles Architecture Engineering LLP

Aerial photo used with permission of Jeff Hobson of Hobson Photography, provided by the State of Iowa Department of Corrections.

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