Science World dome lights to be fully relit by summer after upgrades

Jan 31 2023, 7:49 pm

The landmark geodesic dome of Science World at the eastern end of False Creek has gone dark every night for about half a year.

And it will be about another half year before the dome’s exterior lighting system is fully reilluminated once again.

On Monday morning, specialized rappelling crews were seen hanging from the dome performing work on the lights. A spokesperson for Science World later confirmed to Daily Hive Urbanized that these workers are in the process of completing the first phase of work, entailing the full removal of the old lights.

The second phase of work yet to come will be the installation of new replacement LED lights. This is targeted for full completion by summer, at which point the lights will be turned on once again.

science world workers lighting repair january 30 2023

Specialized rappelling workers removing old LED lights on the dome of Science World on January 30, 2023. (Kenneth Chan/Daily Hive)

Science World’s exterior lights lit up like a Halloween Jack-o’-lantern. (TOTORORO.RORO/Flickr)

A total of 198 LED lights were installed about a decade ago, when Science World underwent its largest renovation and expansion in the attraction’s history since the end of Expo ’86. The programmable lights, often illuminated to mark a holiday, occasion or special cause, were turned on between dusk and dawn nightly.

It became extremely apparent that many of the lights had reached the end of their lifespan earlier in 2022 before the lighting system was completely shut off, with the dome taking on a very spotty “balding” look at nighttime.

The cost of the lighting system renovation is covered by the federal government’s $10 million capital funding to Science World, announced in October 2022, to cover various building and exhibit upgrades. Science World has indicated its building, originally intended to be a temporary structure for the World’s Fair, will require significantly more reinvestments over the coming years.

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