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Traversée lumineuse

#new mobilities #spatial design

// Virginie Voisneau

Recent environmental concerns have led to developments in town planning projects with more consideration for the co-existence of different modes of transport. Today, the townplanner’s biggest challenge is to make city centres safe and practical for a maximum of pedestrians, for whom walking represents 50% of all journeys. In any project which benefits pedestrians, safety is key, in particular when it concerns road crossings where the majority of accidents involving pedestrians take place.

This project concerns pedestrian crossings without traffic lights which are the most dangerous. “Traversée lumineuse” is a system of luminous paving stones and warning signposts which make it safe for pedestrians to cross the road in the city centre. A pedestrian who wishes to cross the road activates the lighting system built into the road. Luminous paving stones positioned on each side of the pedestrian crossing signal the presence of someone wishing to cross. The luminous paving stones remain lit for 30 seconds.

The luminous paving stones are built into a range of prefabricated paving slabs, making it easy to install and maintain the system. The first type of lighting gives off a diffuse light which illuminates the edge of the pedestrian crossing, creating a visual barrier between the crossing and the road. A second type is equipped with a reflector system which directs the light towards the vehicles. The paving stones contain an LED light which is extremely long-lasting, and has low energy consumption and a high mechanical resistance.

The road safety system is completed by a Doppler-effect transmitter positioned on the edge of the pavement 16 m before the pedestrian crossing which calculates the speed of approaching vehicles. When the vehicle is driving too fast to be able to stop before the crossing, the transmitter sends an electrical signal to the luminous paving stones which start flashing more brightly to alert motorists that they must slow down as a pedestrian is crossing or about to cross the road.

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