LANCASTER, Calif. — If you're looking for a road that does a little bit more than just, well, exist, head to Lancaster, California.
Believe it or not, there's a stretch of road in the desert town near Palmdale that is designed to play music to you as you drive across it. Pretty cool, huh? Well, not quite. Turns out a bit of miscommunication between the road builders and the engineers resulted in the musical project going awry, and this video explains the whole thing.
The video was created by YouTuber Tom Scott, who does a whole series of "Amazing Places" videos that are worth watching for the fun facts alone. If it weren't for his most recent video, I would never even have known musical roads exist. And now I know all about why they sometimes go wrong.
As Scott explains in the video, the Lancaster road was apparently meant to play the William Tell Overture, but someone got the math a little wrong. Instead of sounding thrilling and adventurous as you drive across it, the real result sounds a bit alarming.
Still, it is fascinating to hear an actual road playing music, even if it is horribly out of tune. Fortunately for all of us, there are other musical roads in existence, including this one in New Mexico that plays "America the Beautiful." And while the acoustics certainly aren't amazing, if you drive the right speed, the song is at least recognizable.