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Glow-in-the-dark roads hit the streets in the Netherlands

Emily Price
04.14.14
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One stretch of road in the Netherlands may make you feel like you're cruising through a video game. A new glow-in-the-dark pavement has replaced power-sucking streetlights for a 500m (.3mi) piece of the highway. The result is a Tron-like street that shines courtesy of solar-powered photo-luminescent powder incorporated into the road paint. This is just a proof of concept, but its creator, Studio Roosegaarde, hopes to use parks as a testing ground for new versions of the product.

Down the road, new iterations might even include informational markers -- like functional street art. For instance, in freezing temperatures the entire surface might light up with giant flakes to alert drivers (until they get buried by snow). There are also plans to incorporate wind-powered lights that shine only when cars are nearby, and ultimately a special lane where electric cars could charge up while they drive. As you might imagine, the road will have to pass several government safety and durability tests before we can just throw out our streetlights but the glow-in-the-dark road, however, paves the way for the next generation of highways. Hopefully, future versions also support our flying cars -- those are coming soon, right?

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