Pedestrians can now help generate a little electricity by merely strolling through a new “pocket park” near Dupont Circle.
The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) and the Golden Triangle BID today unveiled the “the Connecticut Avenue Overlook,” a new park just steps away from the Dupont Metro station’s south entrance.
The panels, which are made by green energy company Pavegen, generate electricity via kinetic energy to power nearby LED lights.
The plaza includes a pilot project that features Pavegen pavers, a pioneering flooring technology that converts kinetic energy from people’s footsteps into electricity. The energy is stored in batteries that illuminate accent lights in the park from dusk to dawn. Made from recycled polymer and truck tires, the pavers are both durable and eco-friendly. The pilot project was funded by a $200,000 DC Office of Planning Sustainable DC Innovation Challenge grant.
“[D.C.] is the first city in the nation to deploy this state-of-the-art technology in the outdoor environment,” said DDOT Director Leif Dormsjo during a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the park.
PaveGen CEO Laurence Kemball-Cook also gave a short speech about the company’s new kinetic tiles.
“Our plan is to make this the same price as a normal sidewalk,” Kemball-Cook said. “Every major city in the United States will be able to use the energy of the millions of people walking around.”
— Pavegen (@Pavegen) November 18, 2016