Buildings account for much of the world’s energy consumption; thus, it is important to develop ways, not just to harness more of the energy in the universe, but also to make system of devices in buildings more energy-efficient. Occupancy-based illumination is an emerging trend in energy management, but research in this field has mostly been focused on illumination of rooms and workspaces in building interiors. To the best of the authors’ knowledge, there is virtually no literature on the energy optimisation of depersonalised spaces such as passageways. This paper explores the development and evaluation of a controller-based model for illumination of passageways in buildings, where relatively-large number of depersonalized luminaires are usually found and automation might prove especially beneficial. After development, testing and scaled-up simulations, results show that occupancy-based illumination of exterior corridors and semi-covered passages in buildings is feasible, economical, has significant energy savings, and is worthy of consideration for modern buildings.