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Fabulous Bicycle Path Inspired by Van Gogh’s “Starry Night”

Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Starry Bicycle Path, Studio Roosegaarde, Eindhoven, the Netherlands. The city of Eindhoven, in the south of the Netherlands, is the hometown of Vincent Van Gogh, one of the most well known Dutch painters. The opening of a solar bicycle path inspired by Van Gogh’s most recognizable painting, “Starry Night,” this November marked the beginning of an international year celebrating his work and legacy, with activities spanning three countries: the Netherlands, Belgium, and France. Daan Roosegaarde, a Dutch designer who explores the relation among people, technology, and space and the author of the Lotus Dome project, has created this magnificent, glowing cycle path. This one-kilometer path is Roosegaarde’s second achievement in the Smart Highway project, through which he aims to build energy-smart, interactive, and memorable highways.

Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

By day, the Van Gogh-Roosegaarde cycle path looks just like an ordinary bike lane. But at night, the 50,000 glow-in-the-dark stones embedded in the ground light the way for cyclists.

Glow in the Dark Bicycle Path

Van Gogh year 2015 “125 years of inspiration” marks the 125th anniversary of the death of Van Gogh (1853-1890). To pay tribute to Van Gogh’s legacy, Roosegaarde wanted to create something incredibly poetic, a place that people will experience in a special way. The cycle path is located in Eindhoven, where Van Gogh was born and raised. He often used Eindhoven as a backdrop for his paintings.

Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

The new cycle path creates a link between two watermills, Opwettense and Colse, featured in Van Gogh’s paintings, and is part of the Van Gogh cycle route that connects Brabant and Nuenen (the place of Van Gogh’s family home and the place where he created his first masterpiece — “The Potato Eaters”). The whole Van Gogh cycle route measures 335 kilometers (over 208 miles) and is split into five segments, each one suitable for a one-day cycle ride.
Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

A Good Project Generates New Stories The path aims to make bike commuting safer and more pleasant. The 50,000 stones coated in a phosphorescent paint and solar-powered LEDs embedded in the ground imitate the starry twists of the legendary painting. This artwork, a game involving light, poetry, and engineering, provides a reinterpretation of “Starry Night”.
Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

The special paint uses energy gathered during the day to glow after dark. The lighting installation incorporates a solar system that collects and stores energy used for lighting the path if the weather is too cloudy for the panel to be charged. A Landscape Project for Tourists and Residents The €700,000 project was financed by the Eindhoven community and partners, and will be open to the public year-round for free. Innovation and cultural heritage are the basis of this new kind of landscape, which also helps the economy of Eindhoven: Tourists come to experience the path in the evening, and then will stay in the city longer, spending more money. Related Articles:

Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

Bicycle-path - Credit: 'Daan Roosegaarde' and Heijmans

Credit: ‘Daan Roosegaarde’ and Heijmans

This innovative bicycle path is a cultural and recreational project based on the light-emitting diode techniques developed by Heijmans and Studio Roosegaarde for the highway of tomorrow. This kind of bicycle path transforms cycling into a memorable experience in an eco-friendly way. The Van Gogh-Roosegaarde cycle path is a joint initiative of Routebureau Brabant, VisitBrabant, Van Gogh Brabant, the Province of Noord-Brabant, and the Community of Eindhoven. WATCH: Starry Bicycle Path, Studio Roosegaarde A New Approach to Energy and Infrastructure Roosegaarde hopes the Van Gogh cycle path will be more than just a beautiful and breathtaking project; his new vision is about using clean energy and improving bicycle commuting. For this purpose, Roosegaarde has two goals: The first is to create reactive painting systems for signaling and alerting road users in case of unfavorable conditions; the second is to create clean-energy paths that are as beautiful as they are energy-efficient. As Roosegaarde himself declared for DeZeen Magazine: “It’s a new total system that is self-sufficient and practical, and just incredibly poetic.Recommended Reading:

Article by Diana Ispas Return to Homepage

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