Case study: Estación ferroviaria

Kardó sheds a whole new light

Supporting the architect’s vision
ETAP’s Kardó range was recently selected for the new railway station near Bilbao. Design and aesthetics played an important role in the choice of ETAP. ‘The modular Kardó concept integrates multiple functions into the same slim profile. This enabled the architect to realize his vision of clean lines for the platform, creating an agreeable and spacious environment for travellers,’ says Juan Alcaraz of ETAP Spain.

The new Bilbao public railway station provides connections to the surrounding villages, the nearby Basurto Hospital, and the line’s final destination in Santander. The station is located in a very busy neighbourhood on the outskirts of the city.

Open and spacious platform
The architect had a very clear vision in mind for his design. ‘On the platform where the trains arrive, you see only a confluence of clean lines’ observes Alcaraz. ‘The ceiling is not filled with the usual clutter of cables, profiles, and other devices which you so often see in public spaces. The modular concept of the Kardó profiles helped the architect achieve this ultra-modern effect. It made it possible for him to integrate the lighting system, emergency lighting, and even the speakers for the public service announcements into the same slim profiles. It is a uniquely neat and very tidy solution, creating a more open and spacious feeling within the station.’

Optimal use of daylight
The station has large windows alongside the platform, making plenty of natural light available during the day. ETAP fitted the Kardó profiles with its ELS daylight sensors. They dim the artificial light according to the amount of daylight available at any given moment. This measure, combined with the high energy-efficiency of the ETAP reflectors, was instrumental in the station being nominated the GreenLight Label by the European Union.Strong advice and even stronger technical solutionsETAP not only supplied the Kardó lighting modules, its advisors also carried out the original lighting study. This assured optimal lighting comfort, while keeping energy-efficiency firmly in mind. They also designed the steel cable structures which suspend the lighting profiles.

Project sheet:


East and West Entrances

Inside the station

Stairs from both entrances


6 Kardó lines of 3.2 metres
6 Kardó lines of 4.7 metres

1 Kardó line of 118 metres

2 Kardó lines of 11 metres

1 Kardó line of 90 metres

1 x 49W reflector

1 x 49W reflector

1 x 49W reflector

1 x 49W reflector

Suspended 1 metre by steel cables


Suspended under angles

Suspended 6 metres by steel cables

Integrated speakers and K9 emergency modules
Painted in RAL 1021

Integrated natural light sensors
Painted in RAL 8003

Integrated K9 emergency modules

Integrated speakers and K9 emergency modules
Painted in RAL 1021