Icelandic Town Uses ‘Floating’ Crosswalk as Speed Bump Alternative

This Icelandic port town is using a painted 3-D optical illusion to create a floating crosswalk as an alternative to speed bumps.
Image: Instagram Screengrab

The Icelandic town Ísafjörður painted a 3-D optical illusion, creating a ‘floating’ crosswalk as a speed bump alternative.


By Matt Hickman

Iceland is a place of such dramatic, otherworldly beauty that many visitors have a hard time believing their very own eyes. Over the past several years, the island-bound Nordic nation has emerged, for better or worse, as the world’s preeminent blink twice and rub-your-peepers-to-make-sure-you’re-not-hallucinating destination. Double takes, audible gasps, and veering rental cars off of roads while gawking are all par for the course.

It’s that last reaction — distracted driving while speeding to get to the next awe-inspiring site — that’s problematic. To address this, Ísafjörður, a lively fishing and tourism hub in northwest Iceland’s far-flung Westfjords region, has embraced a novel approach to improving traffic safety: fighting rubberneck-inducing fire with rubberneck-inducing fire.

Dreamt up by town environmental commissioner Ralf Trylla and executed by local pavement marking company GÍH Vegamálun, a traditional, striped crosswalk in the center of town has been transformed into a pedestrian right-of-way that appears to be hovering directly above the asphalt.

Continue reading the story about the speed bump alternative on

The video has been access 2.6 million times on YouTube:


See our previous coverage of traffic safety and road innovations:

Innovations in Walkability

Glow in the Dark Roads

Powering Your Bike Paths

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EfficientGov Staff

EfficientGov is an independent information service providing innovative solutions to fiscal and operational challenges facing cities and towns around the world.