Laurel Hill Cemetery, a national historic landmark in Philadelphia, PA, was featured in the latest issue of American Cemetery and Creation Magazine. The magazine is an independent trade magazine for cemetery owners, managers, and other allies in the industry.
The 78-acre burial place was founded in 1836 and is registered as a National Historic Landmark. Along the Schuylkill River and the surrounding community, Laurel Hill Cemetery is visible to cars, bikers, rowers, and walkers. Nancy Goldenberg, President and CEO of Laurel Hill and West Laurel Hill cemeteries, wanted to illuminate the grounds and architecture to create a nighttime identity for those passing by. Goldenberg states that lighting the cemetery is “a way to highlight our grounds. We are proud to be a certified arboretum and want people to come in and see what we have to offer.” To achieve this goal, Laurel Hill Cemetery selected The Lighting Practice to develop the cemetery’s lighting master plan and implement phase one of three.
The Lighting Practice developed a lighting utilized 93 in-ground RGBW LEDs networked via a wireless control system. Al Borden, Caitlin Bucari, John Conley, and Angela Banner respectfully illuminated select mausoleums and their accompanying trees to accentuate architectural details and natural forms of the historic cemetery and arboretum. To preserve and minimize disturbance to the natural habitat, the lights are turned off nightly at 1 A.M. Laurel Hill is lit in white light most nights, however, the lighting system’s color-changing capabilities allow for the cemetery to participate in seasonal and special civic celebrations.
The first phase of Laurel Hill’s lighting master plan was unveiled in early 2020 providing new opportunities to connect with the community through evening programs like walking tours and artistic performances. The Lighting Practice is honored to have collaborated with Laurel Hill Cemetery to illuminate this historic landmark.