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Illumination of the Main riverside in Höchst

Illumination concept, Public space
District: Local district:
Size of area:
Gesamtlänge 650 m

Project description

Reason for the planningIn 2010, as part of the program promoting Höchst 2010, a resolution was taken to design the river promenade in Höchst in a manner similar to that of the riverside downtown. The idea was to ensure the historically significant buildings facing the river as presented in the so-called “Merian View” were clearly emphasized at night, too.

Project district
The illumination of the Main river banks in Frankfurt’s Höchst district includes the parkland between Bolongaropalast and Mainmühle, the town walls from the Mainmühle to the Ochsenturm and the Ochsenturm, Zollturm, Maintor, Justinuskirche and Schlossturm buildings. The stretch along the River Mains is about 650m long.

In the long term, the plan is to supplement this by illuminating Bolongaropalast and its gardens, too.

Planning objectives
The illumination of the historical view of Höchst from the River Main has two objectives:
In line with the overall plan for Höchst, the riverside zone is to be upgraded. The idea: to round out the view by day of the impressive section of Old Town, as is to be seen in the famous engraving by Matthäus Merian the Elder (1593-1650), by an authentic view at night using contemporary illumination. The lighting concept is destined to emphasize the appeal of the newly-designed riverbank promenade at night, too, and thus enhance the quality of the location.

To this end, the plan envisaged the same quality illumination of the riverside in Höchst as was used along the downtown riverbanks and deploying the same types of lights. As a result, the overall impression of the silhouette of the town is restrained in tone and relies on soft lighting.

Project progress

2008                       Construct a pilot illumination example – illumination of Maintor, flush-mounted spotlights in the ground next to the Town Walls
2010  Resolution by the Municipal Council that the project be carried out
2011-2012    Implementation planning and contract award
2013  Approval under heritage law, completion of license agreements, construction of wayside lighting starts
2014        Justinuskirche construction lot
Schloss construction lot
Completion of the Illumination of the Justinuskirche

Since May 2013, the wayside lighting in the section between Bolongaropalast and Fähranlage has been extended. This measure has ensured that the main path along the edge of the riverbank is illuminated throughout, meaning that the old, technically outdated illumination along the Town Wall was then removed.
Flush-mounted spotlights were installed in the ground between Bolongaropalast and Mainmühle to highlight the trees. From the playground onwards, the flush-mounted spotlights inserted in the ground along the Town Wall as a pilot project were supplemented. The Town Wall is now illuminated as far as Ochsenturm; special atteniont was paid to highlighting the sections with stone-masonry in the sandstone.

The Ochsenturm is now properly illuminated.
The flush-mounted spotlights were installed in the ground to illuminate the Justinuskirche, as were the luminaires along the edge of the roof on the north side of the structure.
In line with the different materials of which it is built, the “Ochsenturm” at the western end of the city walls was illuminated in three sections. The undressed stone masonry, rendered surfaces, and slate roof are each illuminated in a suitable color.
Flush-mounted spotlights were installed in the ground to illuminate the Justinuskirche, as were luminaires along the edge of the roof. 
The historical hand crane next to the cableway has likewise been illuminated.

The Schlossturm was illuminated in different ways. To this end lights were located on the Roof beneath the shaft of the turret, on the balcony and on the dome.
Lights have been installed in the Zollturm passageway, illuminating the ceiling. Now, the passageway is bright and welcoming.

Technology and costs:
The sets of spotlights, e.g. on the standalone pylon at the ferry landing point, have been removed. They have been replaced by spotlights close to the buildings. To this end spotlights by various manufacturers have been deployed, outfitted with both energy-saving conventional bulbs and with LEDs. In the overall energy balance, despite the greater number of lights less power will be consumed than was the case with the old system. After completion, the illumination can be switched on and off independently off the street lights. At present, the plan is to have the system run from dusk until midnight.
With the resolution of 2010 a budget of 1.5 million euros was approved for the planning and implementation of the illumination.

  • Schloss - Torbau, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main
  • Stadtmauer, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main
  • Justinuskirche, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main
  • Torbau, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main
  • Justinuskirche, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main
  • Dachdetail, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main
  • Justinuskirche, © Stadtplanungsamt Stadt Frankfurt am Main