Modern London stadium will light field with LEDs

March 2, 2018
Soccer team Tottenham Hotspur decides on digital floodlights after all, but won’t yet reveal the luminaire vendor for the mega-stadium that will also host NFL games and concerts.

Soccer team Tottenham Hotspur decides on digital floodlights after all, but won’t yet reveal the luminaire vendor for the mega-stadium that will also host NFL games and concerts.

Professional London soccer club Tottenham Hotspur has eliminated one of the mysteries surrounding the lighting of its pending mega sports and entertainment complex that will soon host American football games among many other events, as it confirmed that the field lighting will indeed be LED.

Interested in articles & announcements on LED stadium lighting?

The news emerged in a recent update about the stadium’s roof construction that the team posted on its website.

“The roof features 324 LED sports lights...which form the floodlighting for the stadium,” the club revealed in the progress report.

But Spurs (as the team is popularly known) declined to reveal the LED stadium lighting vendor.

“We will make an announcement on club supplier for field lighting in due course once everything is finalized,” a spokesperson told LEDs Magazine. “Until then we can’t obviously publicize who this might end up being.”

Spurs last summer anointed Austrian LED luminaire maker Zumtobel as the lighting partner for the ambitious new £850 million (about $1.2 billion) stadium. But the partnership did not include field lighting. Rather, it focused on digital illumination for the “fan experience.”

Those field lights will indeed be LED, Tottenham Hotspur has confirmed. (Rendering credit: Tottenham Hotspur.)

At the time, the team would not even commit to lighting the field with LEDs. While LED stadium lighting is catching on in many professional sports venues, such as in Major League Baseball and NFL venues, sometimes stadium operators are choosing to upgrade with non-LED systems. It’s not clear whether Zumtobel has been in the running for field lighting.

The 324 LED luminaires will be mounted 6-each on 54 rooftop columns. The roof consists of glass panels that angle over the stands but leave the playing field open.

Spurs hopes to open its new 61,559-seat (for soccer) stadium in time for home games in the 2018 season, which begins in August. Tottenham plays in England’s Premier League, colloquially known as the Premiership. The stadium is scheduled to host a National Football League game between the Oakland Raiders and Seattle Seahawks on Oct. 14.

The team is promoting the facility as “a world-class sports and entertainment destination.” Its many modern touches will include an information technology network from Hewlett Packard, a retractable grass field that can give way to artificial turf, several restaurants and clubs including a Sky Lounge with views of the city and a glass-walled “Tunnel Club,” a microbrewery, a bakery, and what’s being billed as the UK’s longest bar at around 285 ft. It also includes a rising single tier of 17,500 seats at one end designed to enhance crowd noise by creating what Spurs calls a “wall of sound.”

When LEDs last checked, Spurs was believed to be seeking £400 million (around $552 million) in naming rights.

Do any LED stadium lighting vendors have that sort of money?

MARK HALPERis a contributing editor for LEDs Magazine, and an energy, technology, and business journalist ([email protected]).

About the Author

Mark Halper | Contributing Editor, LEDs Magazine, and Business/Energy/Technology Journalist

Mark Halper is a freelance business, technology, and science journalist who covers everything from media moguls to subatomic particles. Halper has written from locations around the world for TIME Magazine, Fortune, Forbes, the New York Times, the Financial Times, the Guardian, CBS, Wired, and many others. A US citizen living in Britain, he cut his journalism teeth cutting and pasting copy for an English-language daily newspaper in Mexico City. Halper has a BA in history from Cornell University.