State-of-the-Art Lighting for the "Alte Brücke" in Heidelberg

Since 2008, the “Alte Brücke” in Heidelberg is brightly illuminated every evening. Modern LED contour lighting highlights the classic shape and ensures a homogeneous illumination of the parapet.

This bridge is world-famous: The “Alte Brücke” spans the Neckar River in Heidelberg. The bridge with the official name “Karl-Theodor-Brücke” connects the old part of town with the opposite shore. Besides the castle, this bridge, constructed in 1788 during the reign of Elector Karl Theodor, is one of the most famous landmarks in Heidelberg. The bridge has a length of 200 metres and consists of nine barrel vaults with spans between 8 and 22 metres. The bridge consists of quarrystone with an ashlar revetment made of red sandstone. It is one of the last great examples of classic bridge construction art before the new material cast iron became predominant in the 19th century, and before bridge construction became a pure engineering task.

Project details  
Owner: Stadtwerke Heidelberg GmbH
Realisation: 2008
Product group: customized


The construction, which was completely rebuilt after the Second World War, was lavishly restored in 2008. Those in charge at the Municipal Services Heidelberg also voted for the complete illumination of the impressive construction for the first time. Previously, the illumination consisted of standard street lighting for the traffic on the bridge. The demands on the new illumination were very high: an energy-saving solution with filigree lamps. The illumination system had to be installed in compliance with the strict regulations of the monument protection directives; furthermore, a pre-installed Plug & Play solution was sought.

The persons in charge engaged the renowned Heidelberg design and planning office LDE Belzner Holmes, located in Heidelberg, for the planning and designing of the illumination. Among other things, the new lighting concept was supposed to ensure the homogeneous illumination of the parapet. For this purpose, the planners looked for a lighting solution that generates a warm white shade of 3000° Kelvin in addition to the already stated demands, while allowing the optimum colour reflection of the bridge‘s old sandstone. It should also be possible to easily exchange the illuminants in case of failure. A value below 10 Watts per metre was demanded for the electric output, and the cable routing (cable tree) had to be designed in the lamp profile system with matching RAL colour.

After careful examination of different solutions by different suppliers, the planners opted for a specially adapted LED profile system by FLASHAAR® LEDLight in the end. The illumination system gently trails the contours of the bridge construction. The especially strict monument protection demands concerning the attachment of the lamp systems required great planning skills. Thanks to intense planning and preparation, the staff of the Municipal Services Heidelberg was finally able to install the Plug & Play ABH-LED profile system within the shortest time in the autumn. Today, the “Alte Brücke” in Heidelberg glistens in a very special light night after night, which not only delights the residents but also the visitors of the romantic town on the Neckar River.