With approximately 43,000 employees, revenues of € 5.5 billion and an investment volume of around € 2.5 billion, the Austrian Federal Railway (ÖBB) is among the largest companies in Austria.
For more than 10 years, Spirit Design has been advising ÖBB strategically and developing designs for its different divisions. Through the work done, Spirit Design contributes to an increased competitiveness and customer value.
New benchmark in European suburban traffic
Starting in late 2015, ÖBB will extend their vehicle fleet by gradually adding 100 new trains for suburban and regional traffic in Vienna, Lower Austria, Upper Austria and Styria. Therefore, ÖBB continues to modernise their vehicle fleet and sets a new benchmark in the European railway network: the cityjet will follow in the railjet’s footsteps and become for suburban traffic what the railjet is for long-distance traffic.
Harmonious branding makes it possible to emotionally experience the brand
The appealing design language makes it possible to experience the strong brand ÖBB and its values on the product level in suburban traffic as well. The harmonious design concept enables the brand ÖBB and its values to be perceived as a consistent user experience at the most important point of customer contact – the train – and all other design elements. Based on the ÖBB railjet design, the new logo ensures optimal recognisability. The combination of the unique, signature ÖBB suburban design and the successful ÖBB railjet creates a comprehensive and strategically sophisticated mobility concept. Consequently, ÖBB is one of the first railway companies to pursue an integrated design strategy that includes both product portfolio and brand presence.
Comfortable atmosphere through premium interior design
The ÖBB cityjet offers its passengers mobile living space and individual comfort. Aside from durability and sustainability, this was the focus with regard to floors, walls, covers, headrests, materials, decorations, colours and gloss levels. The individual railcars’ design with a subtle but very fresh style of colours, a high-quality material and surface concept, special decorations and elaborate, daytime-controlled light design create an innovative yet timeless atmosphere for passengers to feel comfortable. Furthermore, the harmonious interior design ensures a sense of spaciousness that conveys both comfort and safety. Each of the comfortable seats is adjustable with ergonomic head and armrests, sufficient legroom, and equipped with a reading light, electrical socket and a foldout laptop table. Info screens of up to 26’’ provide passenger with the most important travel information.
Universal design creates mobility solutions for generations
The suburban traffic design’s development paid utmost attention to the needs and comfort of a diverse range of travellers. The ÖBB cityjet’s room concept with intelligent, multi-purpose area design, e.g. communication, work and relaxation areas, paves the way for such an objective. The service area offers additional space for wheelchair users, baby strollers and bicycles. Premium interiors create a friendly and appealing atmosphere for passengers with very different needs. Barrier-free accessibility was of great importance: considering the wide doors, open and quiet crossings, or more distinctive colour contrasts for visually impaired passengers. Incredibly smooth track running even at a top speed of 160 km/h ensures an ideal travel experience for all user groups in terms of universal design.
ÖBB Group Headquarters
Tender for Brand Architecture
The new headquarters of Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB) will be built at the future Central Railway Station in Vienna. Together with Söhne & Partner Architekten, we took part in a public tender for the interior design of the railway station, which took place in April 2012. On the basis of this competitive tender, we took the corporate identity of ÖBB into account and made it come alive in the interiors of the building and via the orientation system.
A building to meet all needs
The objective was to also enable this imposing edifice, whose dynamically curved outer form encourages people to associate it with the appearance of modern trains, to use its interior design as a means of establishing a dialogue with its surrounding environment and the people. For us the top priority was focusing on the needs of people who work in the new Group headquarters and spend a large part of their time there.
For this reason, our spatial concept includes flexible zones for communication and relaxation as well as meeting and offices zones creating a private sphere for concentrated work. In this regard, we cooperated with Söhne & Partner to plan spacious lounge areas as well as a sky lobby for events.
Sustainable living inside
All the premises embody the brand elements and the specific brand design in the interior design. Guidance systems arise by the dynamic labeling elements directly integrated in the architecture. Traditional materials were interpreted in a contemporary manner, and air conditioning costs were reduced by indirect mood lighting.
Success Based on Experience
As part of its restructuring, the ÖBB Group has set itself, among other things, the goal of increasing its competitiveness. The high-speed train ÖBB railjet is an important part of this strategy. On behalf of Siemens, Spirit Design developed the entire exterior and interior design of the train, and under direct contract from the ÖBB Spirit Design created comprehensive brand architecture, meaning the railjet’s brand design. Here, Spirit Design benefitted from its experience in other projects within the field of transportation design, such as the development of the integrated design of the CAT City Airport Train.
Design Creates Added Value
From the outside, shape, colouring and contouring of the railjet already create associations with dynamics and speed; an impression that is reinforced by the distinctive, large lettering on both sides of the control cars. The interior was designed from the ground up: three options – Premium, Business and Economy – are available to travelers. High quality materials such as leather, wood, glass and steel characterise the interior of the railjet and give rise to an equally comfortable, safe and luxurious atmosphere.
Branding with Effect
Spirit Design developed a premium brand with a clear, modern look, and a high degree of originality, which conveys the image of an innovative, upscale means of transport. The key element is the clear and dynamic lettering. The branding, which is based upon it, encompasses the entire presence of the railjet on the market: from printed and marketing materials to the entire outer and inner labelling.
Conquering the Market in One Move
In the railjet, the ÖBB possesses a strong premium brand which is characterised by seamless branding when compared internationally. The ÖBB are sending a clear and ambitious signal as a modern, European transport company with aspirations for international leadership, and they are using the most important tool in marketing to make a lasting, positive impression with target audiences: a strong brand.