Canada’s CN Tower: 10 years of energy efficient dynamic lighting by Philips


Special thanks to the writer of this article: Sara Kopamees, Editor in Chief, Canadian Industry 

In 2007, Canada’s National Tower (CN Tower), a Federal Crown Corporation had set a vision to upscale its visual display to convey its powerful story, while replacing inefficient and expensive High-Intensity Discharge (HID) lighting which was initially in place. Spectacular architectural illumination during each night for the 553.33m structure must create a unique atmosphere and endless possibilities of lighting shows that will enhance the Tower’s brand, attract more visitors and create nightlife. The new exterior lighting solution must transform the space into the ultimate event Avenue and enable the Tower to celebrate any local or worldwide event.

After several evaluations, CN Tower collaborated with Philips Lighting. New LED-based architectural lighting technology reduced energy consumption by 60 %, simplified operations and increased lifecycle by four times required for a building of such significant height.


Nishit Shah, Public Segment Director of Marketing at Philips Lighting, said, “Philips Color Kinetics provided the architectural lighting system which helped to dynamically transform the Tower’s image in the night skyline. Innovative solutions of 1330 compact LED-based fixtures illuminate the elevator shafts, projecting lights all the way to the Tower’s antenna mast. Each fixture can produce 16.7 million of colors without the need for additional equipment and consumes 20% of less energy compared to any alternative solutions. Each fixture has a unique address and ability to program remotely through the centralized digital control system.”

The decade-long partnership has resulted in the Tower’s ability, through Philips Lighting highly programmable and flexible system, to create unique connections with people and charitable causes through its exterior lighting request program.


Tom Mellon, a 20-year veteran of the Tower, and its current Director of Operations explains, “I have had the privilege to program so many individual lighting sequences that I can anticipate what the show is going to look like. Since it was launched in 2007, the Tower’s programmable architectural lighting has helped to raise awareness for hundreds of charities and special causes, as well as holidays and national events. It has highlighted the CN Tower as a destination day and night.”

You can read the entire article on the 40th anniversary of the CN Tower in Canadian Industry Online starting on page 44.  Latest issue 

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