A Glow-In-The-Dark 'Smart Highway' Is Coming To The Netherlands

smart highway design roosegaarde heijmans

Photo: Studio Roosegaarde

A duo of Dutch design firms is planning to promote safe driving by making the road smarter.Studio Roosegaarde and Heijmans Infrastructure want to improve visibility at night and in winter conditions with a simple trick: new paint.

The “Smart Highway” uses paint treated with a luminous powder, which “charges” during the day and glows for up to 10 hours at night.

The design also includes “dynamic paint,” made to become visible at certain temperatures. When ice crystals form on the pavement, the newly activated paint appears, providing a reminder to drive carefully.

The upside to improving the road instead of individual cars is that all drivers will benefit from these features, not just those who pay for high-tech information systems. The design was named one of eight “Best Future Concepts” at the Dutch Design Awards, where a prototype was presented.

The plan stresses sustainability, which is where things get more complicated. An “electric priority lane” would charge electric vehicles as they drive. “Wind lights” would only illuminate when a car approaches.

Roosegaarde and Heijmans promise “the first meters” of the Smart Highway will be in place by mid-2013, in the Netherlands. It is safe to say it will not include the charging lanes; the technology is not not road ready at this point.

smart highway design roosegaarde heijmans

Photo: Studio Roosegaarde

smart highway design roosegaarde heijmansInduction lanes charge electric vehicles.

Photo: Studio Roosegaarde

smart highway design roosegaarde heijmansWind lights illuminate as vehicles approach.

Photo: Studio Roosegaarde

SEE MORE: 10 Gorgeous Roads For The Drive Of A Lifetime

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