COLORADO | An arc of neon red to bathe bicyclists in light, radio frequency married with reactive road signs that will flash when bicyclists are present, and specially engineered solar panels with LED lights to illuminate paths. These are just a few of the RoadX Bicycle and Pedestrian Challenge winning ideas announced by the Colorado Department of Transportation.

Road X is Colorado’s vision and commitment to leading the nation in using innovative technology to improve the safety, mobility and efficiency of the transportation system.

“Colorado collaborates with innovators and advisors to ensure technology informs our transportation system,” said CDOT executive director Shailen Bhatt. “With our partners, we issued this open challenge to the public and private sectors to bring inventive ideas and solutions that drive advancement.”

The CDOT RoadX Bicycle and Pedestrian Challenge, in partnership with the Colorado Innovation Network’s Imagine Colorado and Bicycle Colorado, asked entrepreneurs and inventors to come together to develop technological solutions to protect bicyclists and pedestrians in Colorado. These two groups account for 12 percent of the road accident fatalities across the state each year.

Consisting of two tracks designed to solicit innovative ideas and actionable concepts, the RoadX Bicycle and Pedestrian Challenge received more than 300 submissions from around the world. Eight statewide winners — including Ryan Ninness of Aurora — were selected based on specific challenge criteria related to feasibility, adoption and scalability.

Ninness was awarded $10,000 for his concept, Bicycle/Pedestrian Early Detection System (B.E.D.S.), which marries radio frequency ID technology with reactive road signage to alert drivers at intersections: “Bicycles Present When Flashing.”

“The push for innovation in bicycle and pedestrian safety won’t end here,” Peter Kozinski, RoadX program director for CDOT, said in a statement.  

“The tremendous response to the challenge and the quality of the ideas submitted underscores the interest in, and motivation for, creating technology-drive safety solutions,” Anna Ewing, executive director of Colorado Innovation Network, added. “We’re proud that Colorado is leading this charge.”

For more on the RoadX Bicycle and Pedestrian Challenge winning ideas, visit