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Waterton, ABWaterton National Park: Dark Sky Park


Waterton Lakes National Park, located in southern Alberta, Canada, is known for its clear lakes, thundering waterfalls and for being the world’s first international transboundary Dark Sky Park. Becoming an IDSP (International Dark Sky Park) means the 505 km2 area has a reduction in light pollution and energy waste, has improved the human and ecological health within the area and gives the 500,000 visitors, per year, an optimal viewing experience of the glorious starry night skies.

Parks Canada consulted with DMD & Associates and Mac’s II Agencies’ experienced specifier, Carl Huestis, to achieve the specifications outlined by the IDA (International Dark Sky Association), Parks Canada’s manufacturer-neutral Guidelines for Outdoor Lighting and IESNA (Illuminating Engineering Society of North America) standards. The most notable challenge of this project was the scale; Waterton Lakes National Park, officially certified as 1 of 12 Canadian International Dark Sky Parks, is the first installation of this magnitude to be done by the Federal Government and is sure to set the standard for future projects of its kind.

When addressing the best practices for outdoor lighting, at Parks Canada, multiple factors are considered including illumination of buildings, parking lots, roadways, shoreline areas and signage. Along with carefully selecting LED fixtures, that are known for being energy efficient, setting illumination levels, colour temperatures, heights and curfews are also established to ensure the aforementioned positive effects of being a Dark Sky friendly environment.

Being known for crafting custom solutions on both fixtures and controls, Mac’s II Agencies was sought out to consult on this high-profile project to ensure the breath-taking night skies could be seen by all and for the betterment of the environment for all.

End User
Parks Canada
Dorren Electric
Kenniku Tolato
Macs II Agencies Waterton Lakes National Park 1

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