Interdesign Sweden 1994

Transport for the Future, Bergslagen (Sweden)

7-20 December 1994

The focus of this Interdesign was ‘Transport for the Future’, hosted in the city of Bergslagen which was chosen due to its one thousand year tradition where transport has played a central role for industry and trade. The objectives of this Interdesign were stated as such:


To increase the interest and understanding for design as a tool in the product renewal process in all of Sweden
To spotlight Swedish industrial design on an international landscape
To encourage regional economies to engage in product development
Participants were divided into ten teams that tackled specific topics.


Road User Fee Collection

This team’s task was to develop designs for in-vehicle equipment to be used for automatic fee collection, its mounting, and methods for alerting the driver on the charging process. The group proposed: a toll box, toll pole, a pay machine, user interface, and an on-board unit.

Aesthetic Roads – Road Building and Equipment

The design task was to focus on developing road signs, road lighting, fences, noise barriers etc. keeping expressions, colour schemes, and materials for usage in mind.

Transport Services for the Disabled

This group’s task was to make the transport sector accessible for everyone. They proposed devising a sequence of actions in which wheelchair passenger enters the vehicle, a wheelchair docking system (WDS), as well as a process of fastening wheelchair inside vehicle, interior design of vehicle.

Environment and Transport

The team’s task was to develop a recycling system, which is efficient, economically feasible, yet still holds aesthetic properties. The group proposed: various components of a devised identification system concept (i.e. using graphic and colour to distinguish whether package is recyclable, including signage on packages indicating what material it is made of).

Regional Transport of Passengers and Goods

This team was to develop design concepts for transport systems. The group proposed: development of electric carts and combinations of light freight modules, development of minibuses with flexible interiors linked to computerised ordering systems, development of shuttle train/buses with flexible interiors and whole batteries of freight modules making it easier to roll a bicycle on board, and finally, they proposed the development of semi-trailers for passengers and goods useable on roads and railways.

Travel on Train

The task was to create a contemporary and attractive concept to deal with interregional traffic. The group proposed: allowing the entrance areas to be refreshed by softer surfaces encouraging use during transit and greeting passengers entering and leaving, moving walkways to create adventure and diversity, allowing wheelchair-bound passengers to choose between standard seats, among other suggestions.

Freight Transport, Working Environment and Information Technology

The team was to develop the hardware components of the information and communications systems installed in the driver’s cabin. The group proposed: installation of a layered programme with numerically operated menus boasting features such as a hand-held rechargeable computer, telephone, bar-code reader, LCD screen display, paging system, and left or right handed mounting on steering wheel.

New Public Transport Systems

The task was to design the ‘mass transit system of tomorrow’. The group proposed: development of a Personal Rapid Transport (PRT system) which can bring one to four people from point A to point B the fastest way without any stops.

Freight Transport in Cities

The group proposed: automated loading and sorting systems, preloading of goods on moveable cassette-pallets, using database statistics and reading systems on packages, using trucks which also can be loaded from the side, and making deliveries in difficult areas at quieter times of the day are among the numerous suggestions listed.

Information and Ticketing System in Public Transport

The objective was to design a system meant to aid the acquisition and control of tickets, yet still be easy to understand and handled by all passengers. The group proposed: development of two different systems; one that is cheap and simple for the countryside, the other based also simple to understand, but based on modern technology. The proposal emphasised an interactive system that is as simplistic as possible, as well as utilising symbols that are easy to understand and remember.