Glowing in the dark

Smart energy, adaptable road signs, interactive lights and dynamic paint are all part of Daan Roosegaarde's project "Smart Highway".

From the Series

Update: The Smart Highway has been awarded an INDEX: Award 2013 in the Community category. 

Using interactive lights, smart energy and adaptable road signs, Daan Roosegaarde has designed the world’s first and most sustainable, safe and intuitive road.

Dutch designer and innovator Daan Roosegaarde partnered with Heijmans Infrastructure to build the first "Smart Highway" to be realised on European roads. The Smart Highway sees glow-in-the-dark roads, interactive lights, wind lights, induction priority lanes and the usage of dynamic paint.

Smart Highway aims to provide road users with a more sustainable, interactive and safe route to various destinations.

Also known as the "Route 66 of the Future", the project uses special foto-luminising powder to create glow-in-the-dark roads. The powder charges via the sun during the day and lights up the roads at night for up to ten hours. The project also uses dynamic paint that becomes visible in response to temperature fluctuations, such as illuminating ice-crystals on the surface of the road when it is wet and slippery.

The Smart Highway and its partnership is seen as a true example of the creative industry’s desire for innovation and won the "Best Future Concept" at the Dutch Design Awards 2012. The first pieces of the project were on display for public viewing during Dutch Design Week 2012, and it is set to be implemented mid-2013 in the Netherlands.


Watch the Talk with Daan Roosegaarde