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Underground Pedestrian and Cycle Routes in London to Generate Energy


gensler-london-underground-underline-bike-path-2-537x358London’s underground cycle routes might be turning into a serious contender that could bump Amsterdam from the long-held spot of the most bike-friendly capital around.

The latest comes from an architecture company, who propose an incredible underground kinetic-energy- generating bicycle and pedestrian paths.

According to the latest statistics, the population of UK’s Mega City has never been larger, and all signs point towards further increase in the coming years. Undoubtedly, the capital has something to offer and attracts millions of people to go and seek jobs, opportunities, new lives, new cultures, and in return, they define the glorious name of what seems to be the-place-to-be. But, as wonderful as globalization can be, this huge number of people put incredible pressure on all services, starting from transportation.

Not even a week ago, the Mayor Boris Johnson announced the launch of a huge project that will provide safe and spacious cycle routes for all London commuters, which should encourage the cheap, safe and healthy transport option. Now, for everyone, who thought that that would be the most major innovation that the city will have to offer, you might be quite surprised.

Earlier this month, at a grand ceremony held in London, an architectural company called Gensler was granted with the incredible London Planning Award. Their conceptual project to convert abandoned underground tunnels into a massive network of pedestrian and cycle routes, might actually be the solution to the city’s transportation problems.

The project is really genius.  Firstly, it will make use of already constructed infrastructure, which stays unused, and most probably is a home of animal populations that we would not want to think about. Secondly, because it will all happen underground, there will not be any pressure on the current traffic flow during construction. Thirdly, and this is the most exciting part, the pedestrian paths will be equipped with sensors that will capture the kinetic energy from walking people.

It is clear that something has to be done to increase the transport capacity of the city, and the guys from Gensler seem to have the right approach. Ideally, they hope that the green energy that is generated while people rush to work, could essentially power lights, or advertising posters. In fact, one of the directors of the company thinks that it is possible to fund the project entirely from this.

Do you think the public would like that? I mean, if I have to choose to walk through Green park, or to walk under it, I would definitely go for the former, but when it comes to biking, it might actually be much safer and much faster to take London’s underground cycle routes than going on the street. It remains to be seen whether the project will be eventually realized, but the idea is great, it has to be admitted.

Here is a promo video.

Image (c) Gensler

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