Perhaps it’s the small population and size of the country that gives innovation an immediately accessible playing field, The crosswalk is painted to look as though it is hovering over the street, using a sleek trompe-de-l’oeil technique. This effect gives pedestrians and drivers the impression that the crosswalk is levitating above ground. The intention, of course, is to slow down traffic and reduce driving speeds in the narrow residential streets of Ísafjörður.
Gautur Ívar Halldórsson, the manager of Vegamálun GÍH, the road painting company that created the crosswalk, originally got the idea from New Delhi, India. In turn, the Environmental Commissioner of Ísafjörður, Ralf Trylla, came across it while researching for original ways to slow down traffic in the small town, and a few weeks after proposing the idea to the local Police and the Transport Authority, he was allowed all the necessary permits to put the project into action.
After many practice rounds by the road painting company, a final version came to fruition – and it is rather impressive.