Daan Roosegaarde's glowing Van Gogh
cycle path to open in the Netherlands


News: Dutch designer Daan Roosegaarde's cycle path, illuminated with patterns based on Vincent van Gogh's painting The Starry Night, officially opens in Nuenen this evening (+ movie).

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

The surface of the Van Gogh-Roosegaarde Bicycle Path is coated with a special paint that uses energy gathered during the day to glow after dark.

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

Forming part of the Van Gogh cycle route through the Dutch province of Noord Brabant, where the artist was born and raised, the kilometre-long section of path illuminates in swirling patterns that reference his 1889 painting of a night-time scene.

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

Roosegaarde told Dezeen that this method of illumination is "more gentle to the eye and surrounding nature" that other lighting infrastructure, and creates a "connection with cultural history".

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

A nearby solar panel is used to generate power to illuminate the coated surface, which was developed with infrastructure firm Heijmans. LEDs along the side of certain curves in the path cast extra light, meaning the path will still be partially lit if the weather has been too cloudy for the panel to charge the surface to its full brightness.

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Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

"It's a new total system that is self-sufficient and practical, and just incredibly poetic," said Roosegaarde.

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

After its official opening at 8pm this evening, the bicycle path in Nuenen – just east of Eindhoven – will be open to the public year-round for free.

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

The project is the second manifestation of Roosegaarde's Smart Highways research into creating safer and more energy efficient road networks.

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

Earlier this month, his pilot Smart Highway – named Glowing Lines – opened along a stretch of motorway in Oss where the same photo-luminescent paint is used to mark out the edges of the road.

Daan Roosegaarde's Van Gogh Bicycle Path

Future plans include road lanes that will automatically charge electric vehicles and alert drivers when their surfaces become icy.

  • Nicolas

    Nice, but I can see a lot of crashes due to lack of focus and pedestrians standing gazing the road.

    • Lia

      How can I get there from Eindhoven’s city centre?

  • Elliot Morgan

    “It’s just like we’re laying on a sta-” OWWWWWW
    It is beautiful.

  • Frank

    The path lies in Eindhoven, not in Nuenen.

    • Chris

      Can I ask where is it exactly? I just biked here from Den Bosch and hope to see this if I can. Thanks.

  • James

    More glow-in-the-dark goodness by the Lord of Light. These designs will transform our built environments into futuristic visions envisioned in movies such as Tron.

    It’s exciting to think we’ll reduce light pollution and that people will actually be able to see more of the stars from their cities.

    Fantastic and progressive work.

  • kamil kibar

    Smart and beautiful at the same time. Loved it.

  • Richir

    It’s beautiful, but is that a sufficient light level to actually see other cyclists and pedestrians properly?

  • Hope we start to see these in cities soon!

  • Anna PiQ

    I was there last Friday, here you can find a map and my opinion :)


  • drk

    It is wonderful but I was wondering: won’t the lights attract insects? You’d be driving on a carpet of bugs.

  • Göran Carl Heintz

    Where could I buy this paint? Its not difficult to find some glowing paint for kids, but it would be cool with some high-quality ones that last long, are durable and shine a bit more.

  • Alex

    Love this! Amazing.