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Research

Lighting & Lighting Controls Study

Lighting in office buildings

By Amanda Pelliccione December 17, 2019
Figure 2: LEDs, occupancy sensors, multi-level lighting or dimming and daylight harvesting are the most common types of lights, lighting systems or controls currently being specified into office buildings. Source: Consulting-Specifying Engineer

Two-thirds of engineers specify, design or make product selections for office buildings, according to the Consulting-Specifying Engineer 2019 Lighting & Lighting Controls Study — and 82% of these engineers are responsible for determining the requirements/writing the lighting specifications for these projects. Below are five lighting and lighting controls findings as they relate to office building projects:

  1. Design value: Engineering firms are specifying $708,900 annually, on average, in lighting and lighting control products for new and existing office buildings, with 31% specifying more than $1 million.
  2. Specifications: For office buildings, performance lighting specifications are written 73% of the time, followed by prescriptive (70%) and open: alternate or substitute (67%).
  3. Design coordination: When specifying lighting for office buildings, the architect has the most impact on design (91%), followed by contractors (63%) and the electrical engineer (58%).
  4. Challenges: Inadequate budgets (62%), the speed of project delivery (49%) and frequent changes to codes, regulations and standards (43%) are the top challenges engineers face when specifying lighting for office buildings.
  5. Design factors: When comparing lighting products for office buildings, engineers heavily weigh product quality, energy efficiency, the manufacturer’s reputation and service support offerings.

Figure 1: Eighty-three percent of firms always or frequently write performance HVAC and controls specifications, which restricts text to stating the performance achievement required. Source: Consulting-Specifying Engineer 2019 HVAC & Building Automation Systems Study

$131,000: Average total dollar amount of building automation systems specified annually for new and existing buildings. Source: Consulting-Specifying Engineer 2019 Lighting & Lighting Controls Study

64% of engineers report building owners and contractors (electrical, HVAC, etc.) as having significant impact on fire and life safety design projects. Source: Consulting-Specifying Engineer 2019 Fire & Life Safety Study

42% of engineers are responsible for selecting the brand of electrical or power systems included in specifications. Source: Consulting-Specifying Engineer 2019 Electrical & Power Study

Figure 2: LEDs, occupancy sensors, multi-level lighting or dimming and daylight harvesting are the most common types of lights, lighting systems or controls currently being specified into office buildings. Source: Consulting-Specifying Engineer


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Consulting-Specifying Engineer covers several research topics each year. All reports are available at www.csemag.com/research.

Access the full 2019 Lighting & Lighting Controls Study here. Amanda Pelliccione is the research director at CFE Media.


Amanda Pelliccione
Author Bio: Amanda is the Research Director and Project Manager of Awards Programs for CFE Media and its publications.