Sending a Message
Signage for Circa Las Vegas

Situated on the corner of Freemont Street and Main Street in Las Vegas stands the first brand-new downtown casino resort built since 1980. Naturally, it has every modern advantage, yet the architectural design celebrates the history and style of the precinct.

Key Lime Photography Las Vegas
Key Lime Photography Las Vegas

“The new resort looks modern and yet it looks like it belongs in Freemont Street,” states Paul Steelman, CEO of Steelman Partners, the Circa project architects – designers of global entertainment, hospitality and gaming architecture.

The style and presence of the signage would be key to Circa’s visual identity. Since the 1940s, Fremont Street has been referred to as “Glitter Gulch” – a sea of neon and incandescent bulbs sparkling within the traditional signage. The new signs for Circa are a digital makeover of the analogue fashion of the past. LED has replaced the old technology, but with clever design, the new signage pays homage to the past, sending a clear message.

There are five major signs at Circa.

Two of the signs were designed to be 34 feet high and 73 feet, 6 inches wide (10.36m x 22.25m). These contain 8,240 LED pixels in RGBW spaced at 6-inches centres (152mm).

Three of the signs were designed to be 22 feet, 2 inches high and 44 feet, 5 inches wide (6.70m x 13.41m). These contain 3,980 LED pixels in RGBW spaced at 4-inch centres (102mm).

Shop 12 Design, a Steelman affiliate, was responsible for Circa’s lighting design and signage.

According to Shop 12’s specification, illumination Physics designed and supplied an integrated media wall on the south façade of the tower. A specially adapted version of the IP Data Pixel 6 was used mounted in a matrix of various sizes, which was then integrated into the curtain wall. The intention was to synchronously control both the media wall and the signage with video.

illumination Physics were challenged with creating an optimised version of the IP Data Pixel 6 to suit the installation conditions of the signage.

Yesco a company with a 100-year history in manufacturing signage – was chosen to build and install all the external signage for Circa. They provided illumination Physics with their a provisional shop drawing layout , made for the location and number of LED pixels. We were tasked with turning this into a design for customised strings of IP Data Pixel 6. The strings would need to allow for the best cable distance between pixels, the most logical installation path and the ideal number of pixels in a string. 


Circa has set a new standard. illumination Physics is proud to have contributed to Shop 12 and Steelman Partners’ inspired signage design.

Our admiration goes out to Tre’ Builders for their professionalism and determination to get the overall project finished on time despite the most difficult circumstances due to COVID 19.

Circa opened its doors at the end of 2020.

30,000 video pixels brought the striking signage to life, sending an unmistakable message.


“Throughout the property, our goal was to blend the classic with the cutting-edge, and the signage gave us the perfect opportunity. The IP Data Pixel 6 provided us with the ability to simulate the old-school scintillating lights so common to Vegas through the years, plus the option to crank it up to 11 with full video capabilities. This signage is eye-catching from across the street and from across town.”


- Jon Champelli, President of Shop 12Design.

Key Lime Photography | Las Vegas