Today’s Solutions: November 26, 2022

A number of European communities will soon have the opportunity to give their roads a little creative flair.

The Asphalt Art Initiative

Nineteen European cities will each get a grant of $25,000 from the Asphalt Art Initiative, a project that aims to increase pedestrian safety by painting eye-catching murals on the pavement near crosswalks and along curbs. At CityLab, a gathering for urban leaders organized by Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute, the project’s sponsorship was announced on Monday, October 10 in Amsterdam.

Among the areas chosen for the program are cities in Kosovo, Italy, and Belgium, all of which will have better pedestrian spaces. Murals will be painted at crosswalks and crossroads in Istanbul and Varna, Bulgaria. More than 30 grants have already been funded by the program in the US and pilot projects in Europe.

How art enhances pedestrian safety

Recent US initiatives have produced results that demonstrate the effectiveness of artistic interventions in enhancing pedestrian safety, particularly when combined with other traffic-calming devices like bollards and modified curbs. Following the art installation, speeds at a crash-prone crossroads in Kansas City, Missouri, were reduced by 45 percent. In Baltimore, Maryland, the project’s colored curbs encouraged 41 percent more automobiles to give the right-of-way to pedestrians.

Although European cities have much higher overall traffic safety ratings than American cities, the program’s creators expect that the painted roadways will help further minimize risks for pedestrians and bicycles.

“From our groundbreaking work in New York to projects across the US and now expanding to Europe, the Asphalt Art Initiative continues to highlight new possibilities for city streets,” said former New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner and current principal for transportation at Bloomberg Associates Janette Sadik-Khan. “Projects like these not only connect people, but make streets safer, and we encourage cities everywhere to paint their own transportation masterpieces.”

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

How the capital of Lithuania is turning itself into a vast open-air cafe

For many cities around the world, the need for social distancing has motivated cities to experiment with different urban planning schemes. Recently, we published ...

Read More

These bladeless wind turbines could revolutionize the renewable sector

Bladeless wind turbines may sound counterintuitive, but a new startup aims to prove that these devices could reinvent the way we harness wind power ...

Read More

British 13-year-old finds hoard of Bronze Age artifacts with her metal detector

Thirteen year old Milly Hardwich was using her metal detector for the first time in Royston, England when she came upon something unexpected. Milly ...

Read More

LA may ban the construction of new gas stations

In the face of the climate emergency, officials in Los Angeles are working on policies to stop the construction of new gas stations. Being ...

Read More