Cherry blossoms bloom in ESI Designs light display

Historic D.C. Building Comes Alive With Light

A renovated Washington D.C. office building renowned for its historical significance as a civil rights landmark now captures attention with magnificent displays of reactive light.

Cherry blossoms bloom in ESI Designs light display
via ESI Designs

In 1951 Mary Church Terrell led a civil rights protest at the lunch counter of what was then Hecht’s department store. Over 60 years later the aptly named Terrell Place, now a renovated office building, is making history again.

An Interactive Experience

Imagine that every workday was like walking into a virtual reality. Outside, you might trudge through snow and sleet, but inside, cherry trees blossom and fade, fireworks blaze and butterflies flutter with the ebb and flow of activity in the building’s lobby.

This innovative lighting installation dreamed up and made into reality by ESI Design features multiple infrared cameras mounted in the ceiling. The cameras detect motion within 20 feet and activate the media panels of the interactive digital display.

Nearly 5 million LEDs light up 1700 sf of walls in Terrell Place. That’s about 2900 LEDs per square foot. To keep them from overheating, ESI incorporated a ventilated air cavity into the design that keeps the diodes cool.

Throughout the workday passersby may see one of many scenes that make up three different compositions: Seasons, Color Play and City Scape. Each module reactively adapts and morphs to connect the viewer with the nature, culture and iconic architecture of the surrounding D.C. area.

Watch a video of Terrell Place:


Renee Carlson

Renee specializes in digital marketing & content development for Pegasus Lighting. When she's not blogging about all-things-light, you’ll find her nestled in the ‘burbs of Raleigh with her husband & three active boys, getting lost in her Kindle, tackling a long list of home improvement projects, or cheering on the Carolina Panthers.

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