– Alex Tee & Evan Gant Envision Revolutionary Concept for Bicycle Commuters –
Alex Tee and Evan Gant of Altitude Inc. have introduced LightLane, a unique new concept for safe cycling. The LightLane concept was originally developed for a design competition seeking innovative ways to promote commuting by bicycle.
A close brush with a distracted driver is enough to intimidate the most avid bikers from riding at night, and the problem isn’t just about visibility. Though safety lights are effective in capturing the attention of a driver, they are typically constrained to the bike frame and highlight only a fraction of the bike’s envelope. Bike lanes have proven to be an effective means of protecting cyclists on congested roads. One key is that the lane establishes a well defined boundary beyond the envelope of the bicycle, providing a greater margin of safety between the car and the cyclist. Unfortunately, only a small fraction of streets have dedicated bike lanes and with an installation cost of $5,000 to $50,000 per mile, consumers and commuters alike can not expect to see widespread access anytime soon.
“Rather than adapt cycling to established bike lanes, the bike lane should adapt to the cyclists,” explains Alex Tee, Mechanical Engineer at Altitude, Inc. “The LightLane system projects a crisply defined virtual bike lane onto pavement using a laser, thus providing the driver with a familiar boundary to avoid.”
“It is our hope that through this innovation, which provides a wider margin of safety, bikers will regain their confidence to ride at night – making the bike a more viable and eco-friendly commuting alternative,” adds Evan Gant, Industrial Designer at Altitude.
Due to an overwhelming internet response, the team is continuing down the product development path. They are currently building a beta prototype to experiment with different lasers and orientations. Once the optimal laser configuration has been established and the concept validated, Alex and Evan plan to develop a fully functional unit focusing their efforts on several aspects of usability including theft prevention, weather-proofing, and ruggedization. Concurrently, they will be looking for manufacturing and distribution partners.