|A 20-mile solar bike lane has been built in the
middle of a six-lane highway in Korea, about two
hours south of Seoul. Photo credit: YouTube
Until it’s actually possible to pave our parking lots and roads in solar panels, here’s a promising compromise from South Korea. In between the cities of Daejeon to Sejong, there’s a 20-mile bike lane that’s covered by an impressive solar array.
A bike lane that’s also a solar farm is a wonderful concept, but does it have to be smack in the middle of a busy highway? Some have pointed out that cyclists are exposed to vehicular fumes and emissions of the fast-moving cars and trucks zipping down the road. And although bikers are protected by a barrier, a BBC article once observed that Seoul drivers are “notorious for ignoring any traffic rules, especially red lights, and will drive across intersections over red lights.”
Biking would also reduce traffic congestion, which can be pretty bad especially in the country’s capital of Seoul where one out of three citizens has a car.
Despite what critics have said, it looks like many Korean bikers are already using the lane to get from A to B. If you look closely at the footage below (captured by a drone no less), you’ll see cyclists cruising down the path as traffic on each side whizzes by.
We wonder if something like this would work in the U.S.?