New, active luminous road markings are being trialled in Portsmouth by civil engineering and transport infrastructure specialists, Colas.
The Flowell crosswalks and cycle crossings technology has been developed by Colas teams, and trialled at various sites in France, where initial feedback has shown it to be very beneficial.
The new crossing in Portsmouth, which has been fully funded by Colas, lights up when triggered by sensors.
It can also adapt according to traffic levels and needs via an interactive road management system. For example, it can be adapted to give priority to certain vehicles during specific time times of day or allocate space for a dedicated use such as temporary outdoor dining space for restaurants.
Ian Gibson, director of asset contracting at Colas, said: “Flowell stems from a design process led by Colas teams, and it therefore benefits from our extensive technological expertise in transport infrastructure.
“Following the initial laboratory tests performed jointly at the Colas Campus for Science and Techniques, it is now entering a trial phase in real life conditions.
“We are delighted to have installed the UK’s first Flowell crossing in Portsmouth as part of this phase, and we look forward to sharing the results of this trial with the industry.”
The solution is made up of panels comprising of LEDs encapsulated in a multilayer substrate which are connected to the electrical network.
They can be glued on or embedded into pavement, which preserves the surface’s initial grip and skid resistance.
The site in Portsmouth will be monitored to determine its impact on behaviour and help determine how it could improve road, rail and airport infrastructure in the UK and around the world.
Cllr Lynne Stagg, Portsmouth City Council's cabinet member for traffic and transportation, said: "We're always looking for new ways to improve road safety and I'm delighted we're the first place in the UK to use this innovative new technology.
“We chose this crossing because it's very busy particularly at night with all the bars and restaurants, we want to make the crossing more visible and encourage more people to cross there safely."