World’s First Energy-Harvesting Smart Street Unveiled In London

(True Activist) Humans already walk, jog and cycle places for health and environmental reasons — why not harness some of that kinetic energy for beneficial purposes? Such is a question many have been asking for decades. Now, technology capable of generating electricity from human movement has been created, and it’s been installed on a lesser-used path in London’s West End.

Bird Street now has a 107-square-foot array of Pavegen technology which converts the power of footsteps into electricity. According to Inhabitat, energy generated will be used to supply energy for lights and bird sounds in the area.

When people walk on the energy-harvesting smart street, they can even track the amount of energy generated by connecting to an app. The energy generated translates into discounts, vouchers and, of course, clean electricity.

Said Pavegen CEO, Laurence Kemball-Cook, in a statement:

“With installations in Washington, D.C. and at vital transport hubs including Heathrow, being able to demonstrate how our technology can bring to life the retail shopping experience is a vital step for us. As retailers compete with online, technologies like ours make being in the busy high street more exciting and rewarding for people and brands alike.”

Pavegon’s power-generating pavement isn’t the only neat technology in the area. Airlabs’ CleanAir bench, which sucks nitrogen dioxide from the air to create a “clean air bubble” has also been installed. So has Airlite’s air-purifying paint.

The area, wSmart Listhich seeks to inspire healthier urban areas, offers numerous shopping and dining experiences. If Bird Street proves successful and is pleasing to the public, similar concepts may be installed elsewhere in London, said Alex Williams, the Transport for London Director of City Planning.