The Netherlands is shaping up to become the world leader in street-embedded pedestrian lights. The town of Bodegraven began a pilot project testing LED traffic signals in the sidewalks. The latest project involves strips of colored lights deployed at the border of the sidewalk and intersection. Glowing green or red, the lights will let pedestrians know when to walk or stop.
The idea is that since the illuminated lines are right in the pavement, they’ll be seen by texting walkers with their heads down. Right now, the LED strips are only being tested at a single intersection, but its designers at local company HIG Traffic Systems see the potential for future expansion.
This comes several months after the village of Eerbeek installed glowing crosswalks. Lighted Zebra Crossing replaced the usual light-reflecting paint with illuminated light boxes, making them practically unmissable for approaching drivers.
Connected directly to a city’s existing streetlight system or solar panels, the rugged lighting strips draw very little power and can be embedded directly in the road’s asphalt or pavers. The system can also be augmented by adding a range of sensors measuring the number—and speed—of walkers and vehicles crossing it.