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Italian Viaduct Design Has Wind Turbines, Solar Power Built In

Bringing design, alternate energy, and historical preservation together!

From Popular Science magazine:

A new bridge concept incorporates wind and solar energy into its design, generating 40 million kilowatt-hours per year — and looking pretty slick to boot.

The Solar Wind concept would use the space between an existing viaduct in southern Italy to install 26 wind turbines, which designers Francesco Colarossi, Giovanna Saracino and Luisa Saracino say could provide 36 million kilowatt hours of electricity every year.

The design team conceived the Solar Wind project for a contest that aims to repurpose some old, unused viaducts near Calabria, a region in the toe of Italy. It would cost about $55 million to demolish the viaducts, so town officials held a contest for proposals that would re-use them in an environmentally friendly way. The wind turbine bridge took second place.

The proposal also includes a solar-paneled roadway to provide another 11.2 million kilowatt hours, Colarossi and colleagues say. It turns the entire viaduct into a park, with spaces to pull over and take in the view off the Italian coast.

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I’m always excited to read about preserving architecture and archaeological sites, which can be especially hard in Italy – it seems like EVERYTHING is worthy of archaeological exploration and preservation. Happy to see designers thinking about the future and the past at the same time.

I also love one of the comments: "What design got first?"

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Author:

Beth Kelley is an applied & digital anthropologist with an overall interest in how people engage with and are impacted by their environments and vice versa. This has manifested itself in many ways, by looking at creativity, playful spaces and environmental enrichment, sustainability, design research, and integrative and collaborative models of learning such as through play and hands-on learning.