Sunday, November 05, 2017

Optical illusions for traffic calming?

Society spends a lot of money on the question, "how do you get drivers to slow down and pay attention?" From traffic engineers to law enforcement to public-education campaigns - none seem to have good solutions. (Well, the traffic engineers do, but most cities aren't willing to re-imagine their fundamental ways of doing things.)

But in Iceland they're pioneering a traffic calming method which requires only a few buckets of paint: Creating optical illusions at pedestrian crosswalks. Check it out:

No word yet on evidence whether or not the tactic works. But there's plenty of evidence that it's awesome! Some others are even more artsy and elaborate.

H/T: Adafruit.


Anonymous said...

With this idea I can see Texas drivers at the last second attempting to swerve around these "objects", smashing into neighboring cars, and driving up onto sidewalks taking out several pedestrians. Ultimately, without accepting responsibility for their lack of awareness, these drivers will sue the TxDOT and probably win because...Texas - Land of the Unaccountable.
I still see drivers doing 45mph in school zones even though there are bright flashing yellow lights on either side of the roadway. Clueless.

JJ said...

Perhaps this would be a positive outlet for graffiti artists?

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Nah, JJ, they need special materials and you couldn't let them do it except at crosswalks. But it evokes graff, for sure.

@3:25, tort reform probably took care of the lawsuit problem, but interesting point on swerving to miss.

James Smith said...

Yeah, try to get YOUR local government to spend money on artists, special paint etc. when they can just put down some plain ol' white paint and be done with it. Pedestrian injuries and deaths do not typically cost local governments anything.