‘Glowing Lines’ Première: first light-emitting highway pilot project

Last week, the first Glowing Lines were constructed on the N329 provincial highway near Oss (Province of Noord-Brabant, Netherlands). The artwork was designed by artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde and the road was constructed by Heijmans. This makes the project the first light-emitting highway pilot in the world. The Glowing Lines are part of the internationally known and award-winning Smart Highway concept which we reported on last November. With this concept for the intelligent highway of tomorrow, Roosegaarde and Heijmans are jointly working on innovating the Dutch landscape in which poetry, design, technology, safety and an energy-neutral future converge. A spokesperson for Heijmans told me that “the Smart Highway team has (already) gone on to the development of version 2.0 of the glowing lines”.
Much has been written about intelligent highways since the eighties. However, until now the focus of innovation was mainly on the car. The Glowing Lines make the road sustainable, safer and poetic. Roosegaarde and Heijmans have developed a light-emitting lining that charges itself during the day and glows at night. The lining contains a tiny voltage (feed) which keeps the intensity and duration of lighting constant, despite the weather and season and the accompanying amount of (sun)light and length of days or nights.  For designer Daan Roosegaarde, the Glowing Lines are genuine Dutch landscape artwork with their ‘Zen-like lines of light’. Furthermore, it is a sustainable alternative for areas where there is no conventional lighting and they provide drivers a frame of reference, because the lines clearly make the road’s trajectory visible.

On the road to the future

To realise this innovative artistic roadwork, a pilot consisting of two 500-metre road sections with Glowing Lines has been constructed on the N329. Installed at the Paalgraven junction near exit Oss, it is the entranceway to the Road of the Future. The clients for the pilot are the municipality of Oss and the Province of Noord-Brabant, the initiators of the N329 Road of the Future. The pilot project was in part realised with the advice and financing of the Brabant Knowledge Centre for the Arts and Culture (bkkc). Effective from today, everyone can experience this unique pilot over the coming five years as the initial component of the Smart Highway. This pilot will be expanded internationally in 2014.

Innovating the Dutch landscape together

The collaboration between Roosegaarde and Heijmans is an example for all sectors wanting to continue to be innovative. The art and the interactivity of Studio Roosegaarde and Heijmans’ specialised knowledge and experience bring out the best of two worlds. Although the differences between the two companies are major, they share their most important goal: innovating the Dutch landscape.

About artist Daan Roosegaarde

Daan Roosegaarde’s art works are characterised by the interaction between humans and technology. Through means of projects that vary from fashion to architecture, he creates smart and social designs intended to create a better world. Roosegaarde has won various international design awards and his work is exhibited in various venues, such as the Tate Modern Art Gallery in London, the National Museum in Tokyo, the Urban Museum and the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, and various public spaces in Rotterdam and Hong Kong.

About Heijmans

Heijmans is a listed company that combines activities related to property development, residential building, non-residential building and technical services, road building and civil engineering. Heijmans is active in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany. Our focus on an integrated approach and high-quality execution creates added value for our customers. Heijmans realises integrated, innovative projects for large customers, such as companies and government organisations, and homes for investors and consumers. We are building the skyline of tomorrow with a workforce of approximately 7,500 employees.
For additional information, visit www.studioroosegaarde.net and www.heijmans.nl.

By Julie Allen

17 Apr