Mall Of America Architectural Case Study

The Mall of America®, which opened in Bloomington, Minn. in 1992, is the most visited mall in America – accommodating more than 40 million visitors annually. As the Mall began evaluating the efficiency of their old 5,600 high-intensity discharge (HID) fixtures, as well as the quality of light, they decided it was time for an upgrade. 

Shop Til’ You Drop.

“This project began because we were getting to the point where it was not worth spending the money to keep the old fixtures running,” said Charlie Brantl, project leader for the Mall of America. 

The Mall wanted lighting fixtures that would last 10 years or more, reduce energy savings and comply with the new city code. Additionally, they needed fixtures that would keep the parking garage illuminated to their standards of safety.  

The Mall of America initially looked at several LED lighting solutions, but found the glare was unacceptable. Emphasis on safety and security is a top priority of both the Mall and city, so ensuring there is minimal glare from lighting helps drivers and security guards alike. 

The Perfect Fit.

After numerous tests with the city, the Mall of America team lit the majority of the parking ramps with the Tersen Ratio™ Series from Acuity Brands. The Mall also incorporated surface and arm mounted products from the Ratio family.

“Tersen Ratio PG LED luminaires achieved the highest reduction of wattage that still met all of the City’s requirements,” said Brantl. 

“Of the options we explored, no other fixtures would pay for themselves in four years, give us the lighting that we needed and comply with the codes of the city, except for the Tersen Ratio PG fixtures,” said Brantl. “The annual energy reduction was calculated at approximately 7 million kilowatt-hours." 

Additionally, Mall of America also greatly enhanced security on the ramps, while providing parking that is visually comfortable for visitors and employees. “With the new fixtures, the depth of field on closed circuit television is outstanding, which really helps with security,” said Londell Pease, planner with the city of Bloomington. 

Another observation from the city was the way the LEDs appeared from the highway and streets leading into the mall.  “The light levels and distribution with minimal glare was unlike any other fixtures I have seen,” said Pease.

As a next step, the Mall of America is planning to extend the use of LED lighting in the smaller open parking lots.

Alberta, CA

Sherwood Park Mall underwent a renovation to create a contemporary space for shoppers. With 464,000 square feet, architect firm Abugov-Kaspar, implemented architectural elements that would brighten the space and transform the outdated mall.

To add visual details to the walls, Architectural Reveal Bead was specified in the design. Vinyl reveal beads create clean shadow lines and can be used to break up long runs of drywall. Architectural Reveal Beads also provide up to ⅛" of built in expansion protection, which will protect the interior finish from unsightly drywall cracks. Vinyl reveal beads don't dent, kink or rust, saving on job site damage costs and future maintenance of the building. To expedite the project, drywall contractor T Kerr Interior Systems, incorporated Architectural Reveal Intersections to reduce the time consuming process of making job site miter cuts. Speed was vital for this project as the mall continued to remain open during renovations.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *