This concept proposed by the three designers Lea Haats, Erik Mantz-Hansen and Konstantin Wolf is interesting. It is an electric tram designed to improve mobility between rural areas and cities in northern Germany by recovering old infrastructure and abandoned railway lines.
On the other hand, I'm not the only one who finds this project fascinating: it will be among the finalists of the Future Mobility Competition, a global design competition set up by the electric vehicle company. Arrival, which aims to help budding talent. How? Valuing innovative ideas that improve the mobility of cities and advance local communities.
Abacus, the redemption tram
Abacus is a hop-on hop-off system, a bit like some San Francisco streetcars. Passengers can stop it with the classic gesture of greeting (the autonomous system recognizes human gestures). It's all a bit cyberpunk, or rather solarpunk: the look of the electric tram is a hyper-technological version of something we've already seen. The tracks, then, look exactly like they used to be, but are equipped with induction systems that would avoid installing heavy batteries on the Abacus.
Do we want to talk about the glazed surface? A real frame that enhances the views of the German countryside, and enhances the travel experience. The "handrail" is a small minimalist masterpiece: you can cling to it, you can sit on it, a praise of simplicity.
There is also no shortage of accessibility solutions. The low floor, for example, allows passengers with mobility problems to easily get on and off the electric tram, while a retractable ramp can be used to assist wheelchair users.
Because it's interesting
As always, apart from the aesthetic beauty of certain solutions (simplicity is the form of greatness), these concepts have a paradigmatic value.
Let's start with the specific case: much of the urban traffic originates from further afield. The more the population density is gradually reduced in rural areas, and the large spaces make the private car more attractive. In the long run, however, these increasingly older and inefficient vehicles clog roads and sidewalks.
Let's get rid of it, also by guaranteeing more connections with public transport in places such as rural villages, which are normally less well served. This is why the Abacus electric tram is designed.
Over the past 100 years, more than 50% of all railway lines in Germany have been cut off. Revitalizing these old tracks is a huge opportunity to reduce emissions and build a bridge between city and countryside.
Well, good, Gut!