Atlanta-based NanoLumens, makers of custom-built indoor and outdoor LED displays for a variety of markets, plays a major role in welcoming and assisting visitors to one of the Midwest’s top tourist destinations: Chicago’s Navy Pier.
Originally completed in 1916 as part of Daniel Burnham’s plan for Chicago, Navy Pier is an iconic landmark designed to inspire discovery and wonder. Since its last redevelopment in 1995, more than 180 million guests have come to enjoy the Pier’s 50 acres of attractions and experiences. As Navy Pier enters its second century, the venue continues to serve as an accessible, year-round centerpiece for the Windy City’s diverse arts and cultural attractions.
The owners of the attraction decided that, in order to better welcome and inform guests without distracting from the sights and sounds people experience as they walk in, they needed some sort of display greeting visitors upon entry.
“Navy Pier is a world-class entertainment, arts and social destination providing a myriad of activities and experiences for both Chicago locals and tourists,” says Jeff Arko, design producer at Gensler, the design firm that oversaw the renovation. “That energy and informational moment was created through expressive visuals promoting and inviting visitors to join in the fun while providing a dynamically updated daily activity information feed at entry. We wanted to deliver a new welcoming experience that was both present and obvious but one that would not cause any kind of impedance on the journey for visitors from the entryway into the rest of the Pier experience.”
NanoLumens delivered four of its portrait-mode 1.87mm Engage Series LED displays that measure 3.94’ x 7.75.’ They sit side-by-side at the Pier’s entryway. Leaving space between each other solved the challenges of providing a physically obvious solution but one that wouldn’t dominate the area such as one large screen might, the company says.
“Going with four displays for this install allowed us to create some space between each display and not take away from the view into Navy Pier as guests entered,” says NanoLumens’ regional sales director, Ryan Wilhelm. “The way the four displays are set up also allows for a more artistic look which blends in well with the Pier atmosphere and offers this kind of artistic, Chicago-welcome.”
Wilhelm added that NanoLumens was able to provide the very tight pixel pitch the screens needed because visitors would be viewing the content from up close. The company’s Engage Series displays feature the lowest pixel pitch range of any NanoLumens product—from 0.9mm to 2.5mm—making them the ideal solution for any area where crisp images and close-up viewing are required.
The columns can each run content separately or be used as a single canvas with messages that stretch across all four columns.